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Veterans Health Information Exchange (VHIE)

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VHIE Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Question Answer

What is VHIE?

Veteran Health Information Exchange (VHIE) tools give your health care providers a more complete view of your electronic health information to help inform treatment decisions. Through a secure gateway, called the Joint Health Information Exchange (joint HIE), VA, DoD, and other participating external providers who are a part of your care team can safely and securely send and receive your VA health information electronically.

VA only shares your health information with participating external providers when they are treating you.

What changed?

The VA MISSION Act of 2018 removed certain restrictions on electronic health information sharing, enabling VA to seamlessly and securely share VA Patient health information with participating external providers who are a part of a VA Patient's care team. The change took effect April 17, 2020. Previously, patients had to complete a form to opt in or elect to share their electronic health information via VA Exchange.

VA Patients do not need to take any action for VA to start coordinating their care to receive electronic health information. VA Patients (active duty excluded) may opt out of electronic health information sharing.

What are participating external providers?

Participating external providers, who are a part of your care team, can safely and securely request and receive electronic health information through the secure gateway called the joint HIE. These participating external providers can provide care to all VA Patients, and can include single-physical offices to multi-hospital systems outside of the federal health care system. The federal health care system can also provide care to VA Patients, and includes VA, DoD, and USCG.

What are the benefits of information sharing using HIE?

The more information your health care providers have about your medical history, the better. Sharing your electronic health information using HIE tools can help you avoid carrying paper copies of your health record back and forth between providers. The instant exchange of information made possible by HIE can also dramatically improve patient safety, especially during emergency situations.

Secure, seamless sharing using HIE also means your care teams will be able to: 

  • Better understand your health history so they can focus more time on what is important to you
  • Develop a safer and more effective treatment plan
  • Work together to improve your overall health

Is sharing my electronic health information using VHIE tools safe?

VA is committed to protecting your privacy. VHIE uses secure systems that comply with all federal privacy laws. Only community health care providers and organizations that are a part of VA's approved, trusted network may receive your electronic health information. Additionally, all VA and participating external providers work to protect your electronic health information and only share the appropriate electronic health information when it is needed.

What kinds of health information can be shared via VHIE?

Currently, VA and participating providers can electronically share a variety of electronic health information including:

  • Prescriptions and medications
  • Allergies
  • Illnesses
  • Laboratory and radiology results
  • Immunizations
  • Procedures
  • Clinical notes
  • Other relevant medical information

How do I opt out?

If you would prefer that VA not share your health information electronically, you must complete and submit VA Form 10-10164 to your facility's Release of Information Office (ROI). You may also submit this form online via My HealtheVet using a Premium Account.

Please note: If you have not already done so, you will need to upgrade your My HealtheVet account to Premium status in order to securely submit this form.

There is no deadline to opt out and you may do so at any time. If you previously opted out but want to resume secure and seamless sharing, you may also opt back in at any time by completing VA Form 10-10163.   

What happens if I opt out?

Choosing to opt out will not affect your access to care from community providers. However, if you opt out, your providers will not receive your electronic medical records in real-time, which would be used to better coordinate your care. This may put your care coordination at risk. There is no deadline to opt out and you may do so at any time. Choosing to opt out will not affect your access to care from community providers.

I am a health care provider - how can I access VA health information to help me provide better care to my Veteran patients?

There are three ways for external providers to participate in VHIE:

  • VA Exchange
  • VA Direct
  • External Health Registries

Visit the Why Partner with VHIE page to learn more about how you or your organization can become a VHIE participating external partner to safely and securely share VA Patient health information.

Still have questions? Call the toll free VHIE Information Line at 1-877-771-8537 Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-9 p.m. CST or feel free to email us at