What to Expect from OpenHIE in 2021

By: Kasey Cummins
Posted On: February 2, 2021

We are starting this new year on a hopeful note due to the consistent dedication of community members who used their skills to provide aid in the pandemic and others who continue their strong efforts to the mission we all share, to improve the health of the underserved through the open, collaborative development and support of country driven, large scale health information sharing architectures.

In this blog, we will summarize work that happened throughout 2020 and share what is coming in 2021. We have a lot on our to-do list for this year and you are a vital part of our success!

Year in Review: OpenHIE in 2020

While 2020 brought many challenges, OpenHIE community members stepped up to continue pushing towards collaboration in a totally virtual environment.

New and Emerging Communities – Come join us to contribute and learn!

Last year we saw the continued efforts to grow our community of practice both in scope and membership participation.

COVID-19 Task Force

The COVID-19 Task Force formed in April 2020 in response to the interoperability and data sharing needs of the global community. This team meets weekly and their notes, upcoming meeting dates, and connection information are saved on this page of the wiki for those interested in participating or learning from this work. Their focus is currently shifting to also incorporate case reporting into their work.

2021: What’s Next for OpenHIE?

In 2021 the OpenHIE community is looking to focus on four key areas; standards setting, learning / capacity development, implementation support, and building community. Here are a few examples of activities we have planned for members to focus.

Sharing Impact Stories to Build Upon Success

There will be a continued effort to provide the opportunity to share stories of health impact in local communities through the use of OpenHIE’s architecture. As a community of practice focused on improving health through information exchange we want to recognize the advancements countries and implementers have made when it comes to eHealth strategy

Stay tuned for the launch of our new website where impact stories will be showcased. Have a story to share? We are always looking for more of these stories – we hope you’ll share yours on this questionnaire.

New and Updated Tools

This year we will be expanding and developing tools to add clarity and to simplify the use of the OpenHIE architecture.

  • Improving OpenHIE website – Coming Soon!
  • AcademyJust Launched! Self-guided training materials that provide a foundation for OpenHIE and Health information exchange. The first two courses are available now and we expect to be available in just a few months!
  • Updating OpenHIE Architecture Diagram
  • New process for submitting Architecture Specification feedback
  • New Getting Started Guide – This will replace the currently separate guides. This document will be a one-stop-shop for information on getting started with implementing OpenHIE practices.

New Communities, Committees, and Meetings

We are very excited to announce the ways are community is growing in both numbers and reach:

  • OpenHIE Architecture Virtual Summit: 4, 5, February 2021 – Open to all and a place to influence the future of health information exchange and plan for the best ways to support community implementers in 2021 and beyond. 
  • Steering Committee: Kicked-off in January, this committee is made up of country and regional experts that bring key input around how the community can support implementations. Member input will provide guidance around community priorities, and areas of emphasis to OpenHIE’s Operational Leadership Team.
  • 2021 Community Meeting: Last year we announced the postponement of the in-person meeting due to the pandemic. We are currently planning for a community event later this year – more information to come!

Communication Updates

We are taking a proactive approach to update the OpenHIE community of new initiatives and upcoming meetings – below are some of the mediums we’re hoping will help to keep you informed. 

  • More blog posts – just like this! (Check out our recent Partner Organization Spotlight: Jembi).
  • Community mailing list for announcements and happenings. Sign up here
  • Community forum designed to share idea, ask questions and communicate with other members.
  • Twitter is our primary social media platform. Give us a follow! @OpenHIE

In addition to these exciting initiatives, we know there will be much more we can expect to see come out of 2021 and we hope you’ll join us along the way! #WeAreOHIE