CommonWell FAQ: Your questions answered
With the goal of breaking down barriers to health data exchange, CommonWell Health Alliance created a platform for connecting health systems, clinics, and other care venues. Through this platform, healthcare providers can securely access patient clinical data from disparate systems.
Greenway Health, a founding member of CommonWell, recently announced CommonWell’s integration with our Intergy EHR. On a Dec. 18 webinar, we explained how, as the result of the integration, Intergy users can exchange patient information through a workflow seamlessly integrated into the Patient Chart.
Webinar participants had questions … and we have answers. Read on for answers to the top 26 questions!
General COMMONWELL questions
Q: How does CommonWell benefit providers and patients?
A: With CommonWell, providers can get a better view of patient health in a more efficient timeframe, empowering them to improve care, the patient experience, and health outcomes.
Q: Is there a cost to participate in CommonWell?
A: No, there’s no cost for Intergy users to use CommonWell.
Q: How many Intergy customers are live with CommonWell? Where can I find a list of participating practices?
A: As of our Dec. 18 webinar, 21 Intergy customers were live with CommonWell. On CommonWell’s website, you can view an interactive map displaying all participants, or you can do a custom search to find a specific practice.
Q: Is CommonWell a health information exchange (HIE)? With CommonWell, will I need any HIEs?
A: Unlike an HIE, CommonWell does not store data. Instead, it uses a layered security approach to transfer data. To determine if you need an HIE in addition to CommonWell, check CommonWell’s interactive map to ensure you can exchange information with the health systems, clinics, and care venues you need to.
Q: How can I find which other companies have partnered with CommonWell?
A: On CommonWell’s website, you can view all current CommonWell members.
Q: Which versions of Intergy support CommonWell?
A: Intergy v11.10.00.50 and higher support CommonWell.
COMMONWELL INTEGRATION SETUP questions
Q: What’s the typical timeframe for practices to implement CommonWell?
A: Typically, practices go live five to 10 business days after enrollment.
Q: How do I set up CommonWell?
A: To implement CommonWell, please follow these steps:
- Log in to My Greenway.
- Click the Cart icon on the left.
- Go to Product Selection.
- Select CommonWell for Intergy. Then, click Add to Cart.
- Review and accept the terms and conditions.
- Click Place Your Order (this order is free).
- Within five business days, a Greenway Interoperability Coordinator will reach out to assist you in activating CommonWell.
Q: How will I access CommonWell?
A: Since CommonWell is integrated into the Intergy EHR, you won’t have to use a separate system to access it. After you opt in to CommonWell on My Greenway and your setup is complete, you’ll access CommonWell data through the Patient Chart’s Enrollment Application in Intergy. From this screen, you can enroll a patient in CommonWell and manage links to health data from other healthcare organizations.
Q: Do patients set up and access CommonWell through their patient portal?
A: Other than consenting to participate in CommonWell, your patients won’t be involved in setting up or accessing CommonWell.
health data exchange Patient consent and enrollment QUESTIONS
Q: How do we get patients’ consent to exchange their health data through CommonWell?
A: When you opt in to CommonWell on My Greenway, you’ll have the opportunity to download the consent form for CommonWell. Depending on how your practice integrates patient consent into visits, you may choose to have front office staff include this form at check-in or have the clinician ask patients at the point of care. On the Enrollment Application in Intergy, check off the statement “Patient has read and understood the participant agreement” to enroll a patient in CommonWell.
Q: Can I find out what percent of my patients have consented to be enrolled in CommonWell?
A: Yes, feel free to contact Customer Support by creating a web case on My Greenway. The team will be happy to pull your report from the CommonWell Management Portal.
Q: When patients visit other healthcare organizations partnered with CommonWell, will the links on the Enrollment Application update?
A: Yes, the new organization would appear in the Enrollment Application as an available link. After confirming with your patient that this organization is correct and receiving approval to access data from this care venue, you can then select the organization and click Confirm Match.
Q: Will patients have to recognize the name of the EHR used by their healthcare organization to give permission to link to that source?
A: No, they simply need to recognize the name of the organization where they received care.
Q: What if my patient has already been enrolled in CommonWell at another healthcare organization?
A: First, click Enroll in CommonWell in the Patient Chart. If your patient is currently a CommonWell member, you’ll see your patient’s name and demographic information appear as a potential match. If the match is confirmed, your patient’s record will link to their existing CommonWell account.
health data exchange query and retrieval
Q: What kind of documents can be exchanged?
A: Currently, CommonWell can be used to exchange structured Consolidated Clinical Document Architectures (CCDAs), the document type produced by vendors. However, CommonWell frequently works on new use cases. If you would like to present a use case outside of CCDAs, please contact Customer Support by creating a web case on My Greenway. We’d be happy to contact CommonWell about it.
Q: How can I make a query to retrieve data through CommonWell?
A: When you open the Patient Chart in Intergy, an automatic query takes place in the background to find available data from any organizations linked in the Enrollment Application. Once you navigate to the Document Exchange screen, all available documents will appear and can then be saved to the Patient Chart. (Documents are not stored on the Exchange screen and are only saved in Intergy if you save them to the Patient Chart.) From the Document Exchange screen, you can also perform a manual query by clicking the Refresh icon at the top of the document list.
Q: Will I be notified when a document is imported from CommonWell to Intergy?
A: No, these documents are populated in the Document Exchange screen like all other CCDA retrievals. On the Document Exchange screen, you’ll find any available documents from CommonWell for your patient.
Q: When my practice creates documents for a patient, would these be shared with other organizations through CommonWell?
A: Yes. If your patients are enrolled in CommonWell and linked to another organization under the Other Organizations section at Level 2 or higher, that organization can retrieve CCDAs generated by your practice. For more information on the different link levels, visit the training materials on My Greenway.
Q: As a provider, do I need to manually create CCDAs to share data?
A: No, CCDAs are on-demand documents that automatically generate when a third party queries CommonWell. CommonWell then queries your practice to look for available documents.
Q: Is the information downloaded (listed as a summary of care) discrete data that can be brought into the record? Or is this a flat file to import?
A: There is an option to Import Discrete Data, but the CCDA must be saved and tied to an encounter. Only certain fields such as Problems, Allergies, and Meds can be reconciled. These are structured CCDAs, not flat files. To learn more, please consult the CommonWell/Intergy training material.
Q: If source data is changed how quickly would updates be available to view and download?
A: Most vendors connected to CommonWell generate real-time documents. You must query CommonWell; and, if there is new available data for the patient, an updated document should be presented in the Document Exchange screen.
Q: In the cart on My Greenway, I see “Carequality” as an option. What is Carequality?
A: Carequality is a separate initiative that has partnered with CommonWell to extend the reach of data exchange. Through the CommonWell-Carequality connection, CommonWell members can also exchange data with the Carequality network, including systems such as Epic, if they choose to opt in to Carequality.
Q: Can providers see documents and reports generated in the Epic system?
A: Since Epic is part of the Carequality network, you can access any Epic system participating in Carequality if you’ve chosen to participate in Carequality through CommonWell.
Q: Will I have to log in separately for CommonWell and Carequality?
A: You will not need to log in to CommonWell or Carequality. If you’ve opted in to CommonWell and Carequality on My Greenway, you can access data from these networks through the Patient Chart in Intergy.
Q: Do we need a separate consent agreement for Carequality?
A: As a practice, you must go to My Greenway and opt in to Carequality separately from CommonWell. There’s a different agreement that practices must sign to participate in Carequality.
At the patient level, if the consent for CommonWell has been captured, the patient does not have to consent separately for Carequality. You can download the consent form for CommonWell on My Greenway.