Veterans Health Information Exchange (VHIE)
VHIE Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
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 them make more informed treatment decisions. Through a secure gateway, called the joint Health Information Exchange (joint HIE), VA, DoD, and other participating provider organizations who are a part of your care team can safely and securely request and receive your VA health information electronically.
Participating provider organizations, who are a part of your care team can safely and securely request and receive electronic health information through the secure gateway the joint HIE. These participating provider organizations include some single-physician offices to multi-hospital systems outside of the federal health care systems (for example, the Department of Defense, or DOD; Department of Veterans Affairs, or VA; and Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Coast Guard, or USCG) that may provide care to all VA Patients.
VA only shares your electronic health information with community providers via VHIE when they are treating you.
The VA MISSION Act of 2018 removed certain restrictions on electronic health information sharing, which enables VA to seamlessly and securely share your VA health information with participating providers orgganizations, who are a part of your care team. The change took effect April 17, 2020. Previously, you had to complete a form to opt in or elect to share your personal health information via VHIE tools.
You do not need to take any action for VA to start coordinating your care team to receive your information using HIE, you may opt out of electronic health information sharing.
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 safe, more effective treatment plan.
- Work together to keep you safe and improve your overall health.
Is sharing my electronic health information using VHIE Tools safe?
VA is committed to prtotecting 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 provider organizations 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
- Laboratory and radiology results
- 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.
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. Visit My HealtheVet to learn more.
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, 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 community providers may not receive your medical records before you receive treatment. This may put you at risk.
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 two ways for non-VA providers to participate in VHIE - VA Exchange and VA Direct messaging. Visit the VHIE For Providers page to learn more about how you or your organization can become a VHIE Participating Partner to safely and securely share Veteran 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 VHAVHIEPublicAffairs@va.gov.
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