CAQH Launches National Directory of FHIR Endpoints, Third-Party Apps

April 25, 2021
MHE Staff

Centralized resource streamlines information sharing between health plans, Medicaid agencies and third-party app developers ahead of CMS Interoperability and Patient Access rule deadlines.

CAQH announced the recent launch of the CAQH Endpoint Directory, a centralized repository of validated payer FHIR endpoints and third-party applications. Developed with support from the technology company Edifecs, the Directory will help payers meet Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) interoperability regulations that become effective in 2021 and 2022.

According to the CMS Interoperability and Patient Access rule, health plans must have FHIR endpoints available by July 1 to facilitate information sharing with third-party app vendors.

“Providing the industry with one place to find and connect with payer FHIR endpoints and third-party apps is essential for interoperability and burden reduction,” said Robin Thomashauer, president of CAQH. “The CAQH Endpoint Directory, developed with stakeholders from across the healthcare industry, will simplify how organizations connect and support consumers with greater access to their healthcare information.”

There are currently more than 300,000 possible connections between payers and third-party apps, and without a trusted directory, each payer and developer would have to identify, verify, and maintain these connections on their own, according to a release by CAQH. The CAQH Endpoint Directory will enable payers and application developers to quickly and efficiently find and validate the connections needed to exchange information.

To develop this solution, CAQH convened a work group of CAQH health plans, engaged with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) FHIR at Scale Task Force (FAST), conferred with industry standards organizations, and solicited broad industry feedback through various "connectathons" and industry events.

This solution will continue to evolve to meet changing industry needs and requirements, the release said. CAQH has partnered exclusively with EHNAC and soon will provide incentives for CAQH Endpoint Directory participants to become accredited to demonstrate their technical, privacy, and security credentials to engage in a FHIR API ecosystem. Future CAQH Endpoint Directory releases may also include provider endpoints and additional services to support accurate data matching for payer-to-payer data exchange.

To learn more about the CAQH Endpoint Directory and the growing list of participating organizations, click here.