Human API, CMS unveil FHIR-based API for 53 million Medicare patients

The new API, debuted at HIMSS18, enables patients to securely share their Medicare claims history using a new HL7 FHIR standard.
By Bill Siwicki
12:35 PM
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CMS FHIR-based API

Healthcare data is an important resource patients can use to improve health outcomes for themselves and as part of research groups. This fact is driving the need for easier ways patients and providers can share information.

At HIMSS18, Human API, a patient-centric health data network, announced a collaboration with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services to make the new CMS Blue Button 2.0 API available through the Human API data network. This collaboration will enable millions of Medicare patients to connect and authorize the sharing of their longitudinal claims information with new providers, clinical researchers and digital health services, Human API said.

“Partners integrating with Blue Button 2.0 like Human API furthers our mission at CMS to put the patient in control of their own data,” said Kelly Taylor, product manager for the U.S. digital service team leading the Blue Button 2.0 API development effort at CMS. “Human API has built a massive network of clinical data sources and EHR integrations and is an ideal partner for CMS to launch our new Blue Button claims data API.”

Companies like Human API are solving difficult interoperability problems that will benefit millions of Medicare beneficiaries and help advance medical research and population health initiatives, Taylor added.

With the CMS Blue Button 2.0 API available through Human API, third-party software developers and healthcare providers can build integrations to access claims information for a beneficiary. The Blue Button 2.0 API contains four years of claims data for 53 million Medicare beneficiaries and provides access to Medicare Part A, B and D data.

This data reveals a variety of information about a beneficiary’s health, including type of Medicare coverage, drug prescriptions, primary care treatment and cost. Using the HL7 Fast Health Interoperability Resource (FHIR) framework to ensure data is in a structured format that can be accepted by a wide range of applications, Human API has designed an interface on top of the FHIR API to enable Medicare beneficiaries to connect their data to third-party applications.

“Human API’s core value lies in our ability to connect and normalize health data from thousands of data sources, covering over 230 million U.S. consumers, through a single API,” said Andrei Pop, Human API CEO. “Opening up CMS claims data for patient-centric interoperability represents an exciting opportunity for the whole healthcare ecosystem to benefit.”

With real-time access to their own claims data history, Medicare patients will discover many new opportunities to improve their health outcomes, participate in medical research and benefit from new digital health services, Pop added.

The new collaboration will be showcased in the CMS booth 10110.

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Twitter: @SiwickiHealthIT
Email the writer: bill.siwicki@himssmedia.com