Health Information Exchange Systems

The ministry publishes conformance standards for software organizations seeking access to the ministry's health information exchange systems. These standards include business rules, application enforced rules, privacy and security rules, and training development and delivery rules. The standards also include detailed technical specifications for the transport mechanism and electronic message services used in transmitting the information.

The ministry's available health information exchange services include the following:

Client Registry

The Client Registry is B.C.’s official registry of healthcare client demographic information. This includes the personal health number, health authority source system identifiers (e.g., medical record number), name, date of birth, date of death (if applicable), gender, address and telephone number.

Authorized users with a point-of-service application integrated with the Client Registry can:

  • Search for and capture patient identity information
  • Store client demographics from the Client Registry in the point-of-service application
  • Update client demographic information in the Client Registry; and
  • Create a personal health number for patients

Provider Registry

The Provider Registry is the authoritative registry of B.C. healthcare providers' demographic and professional information (e.g., name, identifiers, demographics, expertise, contact and licensing status). This information can be used to maintain internal provider directories within the health sector. The registry also supports activities such as patient referrals and informal consultations between care providers.

Authorized users with a point-of-service application integrated with the Provider Registry can:

  • Search for provider demographic and professional information and store the results in their local application
  • Receive real time distributions of updated provider information to store in local directories and
  • Update a provider's work location information in the Provider Registry

PharmaNet

PharmaNet is the provincial drug information and claims processing system that links all pharmacies in British Columbia, and contains every prescription dispensed in the province's pharmacies. PharmaNet helps pharmacists and other core providers identify and warn patients about potentially harmful medication interactions, unintended duplications, and risks from the misuse of prescription drugs.

Authorized users with a point-of-service application integrated with PharmaNet can:

  • Submit prescription dispense and claim information
  • Access patient medication histories and store them in their local application
  • Update patient medication histories with over-the-counter medications, dispensed samples, clinical conditions and adverse drug reactions
  • Generate drug monographs for professional information and patient counselling
  • Perform drug use evaluations to identify possible drug interactions and
  • Monitor patient medication adherence by verifying the status of a prescription

Provincial Laboratory Information Solution

The Provincial Laboratory Information Solution contains diagnostic laboratory test results from private and public laboratories across British Columbia. It allows authorized care providers to access their patients' historical and recently published lab test results, including tests ordered by other healthcare providers. This allows care providers to make timely and appropriate clinical decisions, and prevents the duplication of lab tests.

Authorized users with a point-of-service application integrated with the Provincial Laboratory Information System can:

  • View a summary of all lab results within a specified time period for a patient
  • Select lab results reports to retrieve and
  • View and store the lab results data in the local software for other clinical decision support purposes (e.g., trending, graphing)