In an initiative to help accelerate the adoption of electronic health care records, ICSA Labs and the Medical Transcription Industry Association (MTIA) have formed a consortium to devise common standards and practices for the creation and sharing of digitized transcriptions of physician-dictated patient notes.
These notes, which doctors dictate to provide in-depth detail of their patients' care and treatment, are a key element of electronic medical records. However, converting transcriptions into a secure, digitized format for electronic sharing with other doctors, hospitals and health care providers is nearly impossible without a single agreed-upon format for the exchange of this information.
The Medical Transcription Service Consortium (MTSC) - the group formed by ICSA Labs, an independent division of Verizon Business, and the MTIA - will develop a common framework for the digitization of transcribed dictated records, including interoperability standards for the seamless and secure exchange of data among health care providers.
The MTIA estimates that its member companies annually create and electronically archive more than 2.4 billion transcribed medical records, involving more than 70 percent of all U.S. physicians.
George Japak, managing director, ICSA Labs, said, "Interoperability, privacy and security are challenges that hospitals, physicians and clinics face when trying to exchange records electronically. The goal of the consortium is to help advance the health care industry through the digital exchange of physician-dictated notes in a common format so that information technology becomes an enabler for better patient care and greater efficiency among health care providers."
In a related development, the MTSC announced that Verizon Business has been selected to develop the new IT platform that will securely carry the digitized transcribed notes of physicians for consortium members. It will be designed and deployed using security best practices, allowing for objective testing and certification for privacy, security and interoperability.
Peter Preziosi, the MTIA's chief executive officer, said, "Medical transcription is a critical part of the U.S. health care industry, and the creation of the consortium will help the industry increase the electronic exchange of patient data through a common set of standards.
"By enabling the sector to move toward quicker adoption of standards-compliant health records, a key goal of the federal government, the health care industry will be able to accelerate the use of electronic health records and ensure greater access to the critical patient information among all health care providers," Preziosi said.
About ICSA Labs
ICSA Labs, an independent division of Verizon Business, offers vendor-neutral testing and certification of security products. Many of the world's top security vendors submit their products for testing and certification at ICSA Labs. Businesses rely on ICSA Labs to authoritatively set and apply objective testing and certification criteria for measuring product compliance and reliability. For more information about ICSA Labs, please visit: www.icsalabs.com.
About Medical Transcription Industry Association
The not-for-profit Medical Transcription Industry Association (MTIA) is the world's largest trade association serving medical transcription service operators. Its mission is to create an environment in which medical transcription companies can prosper, grow, and deliver the highest level of healthcare documentation services. Find more information at www.mtia.com.
About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), is a global leader in communications and IT solutions. We combine professional expertise with one of the world's most connected IP networks to deliver award-winning communications, IT, information security and network solutions. We securely connect today's extended enterprises of widespread and mobile customers, partners, suppliers and employees - enabling them to increase productivity and efficiency and help preserve the environment. Many of the world's largest businesses and governments - including 96 percent of the Fortune 1000 and thousands of government agencies and educational institutions - rely on our professional and managed services and network technologies to accelerate their business. Find out more at www.verizonbusiness.com.