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AB 133 Requires Data Sharing Between Healthcare Organizations

AB 133, signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom on July 27, 2021, is a significant step towards transforming healthcare in California. Here’s a breakdown of its key provisions and implications:

  1. Data Sharing Mandate:
    • AB 133 mandates that various healthcare entities, termed “specified entities,” share health information with each other in real-time by January 31, 2024. Specified entities encompass a wide range, including hospitals, physician organizations, medical groups, skilled nursing facilities, health plans, and clinical laboratories.
    • The aim is to establish a seamless and secure exchange of health data across the state, facilitating better patient care coordination and outcomes.
  2. Exemptions and Extensions:
    • Some healthcare providers have until January 31, 2026, to comply with the data sharing mandate. This includes smaller physician practices, rehabilitation hospitals, long-term acute care hospitals, critical access hospitals, and certain clinics.
    • The extended timeline acknowledges the varying capacities and resources among healthcare entities.
  3. Types of Health Information to be Shared:
    • Hospitals, clinics, and physician practices must share a minimum set of health data, including immunizations, allergies, medications, and clinical notes. After October 6, 2022, they must share all “electronic health information” (EHI) as defined by relevant regulations.
    • Health insurers and plans must share data required under the CMS Interoperability and Patient Access final rule, which encompasses claims and encounter information.
  4. California Health and Human Services Data Exchange Framework:
    • The California Health and Human Services Agency (CHHSA) is tasked with establishing a comprehensive data exchange framework by July 1, 2022. This framework will include a unified data sharing agreement and policies governing health information exchange among entities and government agencies in the state.
    •  CalHHS Data Sharing Agreement (DSA) Signing Portal
  5. POLST eRegistry: Working Toward a Statewide POLST Registry in California
    • AB 133 introduces the California POLST eRegistry Act, which establishes a statewide electronic registry for Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) information.
    • This registry aims to centralize POLST information, making it accessible to authorized healthcare providers and ensuring patients’ treatment preferences are honored.

In summary, AB 133 represents a concerted effort to enhance healthcare delivery in California by promoting data interoperability, improving care coordination, and empowering patients to make informed decisions about their treatment preferences.

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Data Exchange Framework Guiding Principles