Health Information Exchange

The Health Information Exchange (HIE) is the technology which allows electronic health and care records to be shared. It links up records created in the North East and North Cumbria and as a result helps to provide safer care for our 3.6million population.

Newcastle Hospitals is implementing the regional HIE on behalf of the region. Therefore, they are closely working with all health and care organisations in our region to connect them to the HIE. A contract with a system supplier was awarded in April 2019 and testing is currently underway.

HIE briefings

We hosted a webinar on 17 October 2019 which provided an update on the HIE implementation. The recording of the webinar is available on our YouTube channel.

A copy of the slides from the webinar are is available to view.

The latest HIE briefing document and slide deck was published July 2019. In addition, an outline of the current governance arrangements which oversees the HIE programme is available. This governance will evolve and be updated as the programme develops. Furthermore, in future it will include patient and public and ethics panels.

An update on the HIE and a Q&A was published in this webinar on held on 18 July.

You can also access the first HIE briefing document and slide deck, published May 2019.

What will the HIE do?

The HIE allows health and care professionals to view data recorded on their patients from other parts of the system.

It presents a consolidated view of the most commonly needed information about the patient. It pulls together data from different sources and can be filtered and interrogated therefore allowing the most important information to be displayed.

In most cases, HIE will be embedded in the existing IT system, so no additional log in will be required. For some users, you will need to access HIE from a web browser which will require an additional log-in. The long term plan is to ensure that all IT systems in use across the region will link directly to the HIE.

What is a connector and a viewer?

There are two aspects to the HIE – connecting and viewing. Having a connector means that the organisation is sharing their data and allowing it to be viewed in other organisations.

Most organisations will have viewers in place before connectors. The benefits of the HIE are only fully realised once all organisations across the region are both connected and viewing data.

The first connecting organisations are:

  • GPs (across the whole region)
  • Cumbria, Northumberland Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust
  • South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust
  • Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Sunderland City Council

We will provide more detail and guidance on connectors and viewers, and what organisations need to do to install them.

The first five connecting organisations and viewers for all other organisations are expected to be live by the end of 2019.

If you have a query about the implementation of the HIE – post on our online network or email us.