HIMSS Electronic Health Record Vendors Association (EHRVA) Announces the Availability of CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide to Support Vendors’ Interoperability Work

EHRVA is making the CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide available to EHR vendors and other HIT software suppliers to facilitate their implementation of these standards as the industry collaborates to achieve interoperability.

(CHICAGO) March 08, 2006 - EHRVA today announced the availability of the Quick Start Guide for Care Record Summary Documents Using CDA Release 2.0 as a tool to support healthcare software developers implementation of the CDA/CRS (Clinical Document Architecture/Care Record Summary) standard developed by Health Level Seven (HL7, www.HL7.org). The CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide provides directives for managing clinical content in order to establish healthcare information interoperability. The Guide was developed by Alschuler Associates, LLC, a consulting firm that also worked with the EHRVA on the Quick Start Guide for Simple CDA Release 2.0 Documents (www.alschulerassociates.com).

CRS and the Quick Start Guide were central to the success of the Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE, www.IHE.org) Showcase at the 2006 HIMSS Annual Conference (www.HIMSS.org) and are supported by the Interoperability Collaborative (IC) composed of EHRVA, HL7 and IHE members. The CRS complements the EHRVA Interoperability Roadmap which was recently made available for public comment (www.himssehrva.org). 

CRS passed its third informative ballot under HL7 when all outstanding issues were reconciled at the January HL7 Working Group Meeting. When these comments are integrated into the CRS, the Guide will be reissued and will be updated as stakeholders provide input. Like the Roadmap, the CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide is another example of collaboration among key stakeholders and aligns with David Brailer, MD, National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s call for demonstrations of cooperation toward achieving interoperability.

“The CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide helps with implementing the cross-enterprise sharing of medical summaries- (XDS-MS), which is the foundation of the IHE” said Charles Parisot, Manager, Standards and Testing, GE Healthcare Integrated IT Solutions and EHRVA Standards and Interoperability Workgroup Chair.   “Thanks to the clinicians who led the development of the ambulatory clinic referral and hospital discharge summary use-cases we were able to successfully demonstrate at HIMSS 2006 that the essential components of the patient record required to deliver effective, efficient care, including structured medications, allergies and problems, can be effectively exchanged.”
"This project allows software developers to easily learn how to represent medical summary content using the CDA/CRS, which we are also using to help combine the CDA and ASTM International's Continuity of Care Record (CCR) into a single, converged standard," adds Dan Russler, MD, VP Clinical Technology, McKesson Provider Technologies and HL7 Board member.
 “We were delighted to contribute to the development of the CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide,” said Don Schoen, CEO of MediNotes Corporation.  “The process is designed to make the adoption of standards easier and with the guide we were able to create medical summaries with simple and rich structured content in a very reasonable timeframe.” 
Along with GE Healthcare, McKesson Provider Technologies and MediNotes, other EHRVA firms that supported the development of the CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide include Allscripts, Cerner Corporation, Greenway Medical Technologies, Eclipsys, Epic Systems, NextGen, Siemens Medical Solutions and Practice Partner (formerly PMSI).  The EHRVA also acknowledges the support of the Department of Defense, Tricare Military Health System in developing the CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide.

The CDA/CRS Quick Start Guide is available at www.himssehrva.org.  Please submit comments and suggestions to crsqsg@alschulerassociates.com.

HIMSS EHRVA is a trade association of Electronic Health Record (EHR) vendors that join together to lead the HIT industry in the accelerated adoption of electronic health records in hospital and ambulatory care settings in the US. Representing an estimated 98% of the installed EHR systems in the US, the association provides a forum for the vendor community to speak with a unified voice relative to standards development, the EHR certification process, interoperability, performance and quality measures, and other EHR issues as they become subject to increasing government, insurance and provider driven initiatives and requests. Membership is open to HIMSS corporate members with legally formed companies designing, developing and marketing their own commercially available EHRs with installations in the USA. The association, comprised of approximately 40 member companies, is a partner of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and operates as an organizational unit within HIMSS. For more information, visit http://www.himssehrva.org

About Alschuler Associates, LLC

Alschuler Associates, LLC is a consulting firm supporting the implementation of CDA and XML-based document solutions for healthcare. Liora Alschuler, principal, is a co-editor of CDA, co-chair of the HL7 Structured Documents Technical Committee and a member of the HL7 Board of Directors, 2005-2006. For more information, see http://www.alschulerassociates.com.