EHR developers are adopting FHIR-based oncology standardization

In a potential major advance for oncology treatment and information sharing, several leading electronic health record providers this week made a voluntary commitment to adopt the United States Core Data for Interoperability Plus Cancer, or USCDI+ Cancer, a recommended minimum set of key cancer-related data elements. include in a patient’s EPD.

They also pledged to support the necessary data elements for a new cancer care payment model developed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.


First launched in 2016 and then resurrected in 2022, the Cancer Moonshot Initiative is a multifaceted effort that aims to reduce costs and improve patient care and outcomes for cancer patients and requires that EHRs have interoperability and embracing new data standards.

According to Tuesday’s White House Office of Science and Technology Policy blog, in coordination with the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, the National Institutes of Health, CMS and the Cancer Moonshot, the group of EHR developers voluntarily committed to adopting data elements that include essential information about a person’s treatment history, test results, and disease status to improve data sharing among healthcare providers.

The administration said the adoption by Epic, Oracle Health, Meditech, athenahealth, Flatiron, Ontada, ThymeCare and CVS Health EHRs will improve care coordination for people facing cancer nationwide, especially in rural and underserved areas. Standardizing data in EHRs also opens up new opportunities for faster research results and more effective public health interventions, OSTP also noted in a blog post.

Because the EOM data elements are also at the core of USCDI+ Cancer, a recommended minimum set of key cancer-related data elements to be included in a patient’s EHR, the administration said it is calling on the entire healthcare ecosystem to accelerate national health information exchange to support.


Health data and research have been locked in silos for too long, former President Barrack Obama noted in January 2016, when he announced the Cancer Moonshot in his final State of the Union address β€” and appointed then-Vice President Joe Biden to lead it.

At the time, he said only 5% of cancer patients in the US ended up in a clinical trial.

β€œMost don’t get access to their own data,” Obama said. β€œAt the same time, community oncologists – who treat more than 75% of cancer patients – have limited access to cutting-edge research and advances.”

According to him, that number has increased research published in the Journal of Clinical Oncologyj in 2021.

By 2020, β€œit is estimated that at least 25.4% of adult cancer patients would participate in one or more cancer clinical trials,” the researchers said, concluding that based on Commission on Cancer enrollment data, β€œthe number of trial enrollments to cancer treatments was 6.3. %, higher than historical estimates of <5%.”

Now, FHIR-based oncology data sharing through the EOM could improve oncology delivery for years to come, according to Jennifer Goldsack of the Digital Medicine Society.

She said Healthcare IT news In January, it became clear that harnessing the power of digital innovation to achieve the goal of reducing cancer deaths by 50% will become possible when the data flows.

β€œData does not sit in a manila folder in a filing cabinet, where the only practice manager or principal investigator of a clinical trial is the one who has access.”

With the right interoperability specifications, privacy and security can fundamentally change the way we deliver healthcare, Goldsack said.

β€œWe’ve been talking about healthcare system learning and precision medicine for decades, but now we can make it happen.”


These commitments do not apply to us, but to the people who rely on these electronic health record systems, including healthcare providers and patients,” said Dr. Danielle Carnival, Deputy Assistant to the President of Cancer Moonshot, in the blog. β€œWe applaud this voluntary action by leaders in the electronic health record developer community as it will help physicians provide better treatment to people with cancer.”

Andrea Fox is editor-in-chief of Healthcare IT News.

Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS Media publication.