AHIMA recently announced the creation of AHIMA dHealth (AHIMAdHealth.org), a solution where providers and other health care stakeholders can discover digital health products, including ones that have passed an AHIMA assessment showing they secure and protect patient data.
AHIMA is working with Moxe, a clinical data clearinghouse focusing on interoperability solutions, to develop AHIMA dHealth. Through the AHIMA dHealth Assessment, providers now have a reputable resource they can turn to for critical information about a digital health product’s privacy and data security practices and policies. All AHIMA dHealth Approved digital health products that pass the assessment will be listed in an online directory that providers can use to verify the product has earned the designation.
The AHIMA dHealth Assessment is especially relevant in light of recent regulatory changes in the United States that give patients more access and power over their health information. Last year, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology finalized the Cures Act Final Rule, which requires hospitals and providers to adopt standardized application programming interfaces that allow individuals to access and use electronic health information without special effort on the part of the patient. This means patients now have the power to direct providers to share their health records with third-party digital health products, including consumer health apps.
To become AHIMA dHealth Approved, digital health companies must complete a self-reported assessment based upon AHIMA standards and best practices for privacy and data security. The assessment is particularly relevant for digital health products that are not regulated by HIPAA.
AHIMA CEO Wylecia Wiggs Harris, PhD, CAE, says the program will make it easier and simpler for providers to grant patient information requests. AHIMA has long advocated for the rights of patients to access their health information and released a policy statement last year saying, “AHIMA supports the right of individuals to access their accurate and complete health information in a timely manner.”
“Through AHIMA dHealth, we’re assessing digital health products so providers can spend more time focused on patient care and discern risk more quickly,” Harris says. “Providers will have to place fewer requests in their ‘need to review’ funnel, as they can use the AHIMA dHealth directory to easily see which digital health products are AHIMA dHealth Approved. I believe this program will make it easier for providers to comply with the Cures Act Final Rule.”
Moxe CEO Dan Wilson says the AHIMA dHealth Assessment will help digital health companies avoid delays in receiving patient health information from providers, while buttressing their reputation as an industry leader that secures and protects patient health information.
“Earning AHIMA dHealth Approval shows that your product takes privacy and data security seriously,” Wilson says. “Having this designation allows developers to build trust with providers and patients, which has the potential to earn and positively impact more users.”