Besides HIE and the Mass HIway there are conventional ways to share Protected Health Information (PHI) with other providers, such as fax, sFTP, and secure email. The aspects to consider when evaluating a new HIE solution versus these old methods include the cost, finding the address of a recipient, message structure, certainty of receipt, and security.
The chart below shows the pros and cons of the Mass HIway versus the conventional methods. The two columns on the right correspond to the four HIway connection methods. The second of these two columns represents the three methods that connect the Mass HIway directly to an EHR.
It is clear that the Mass HIway provides a cost-effective Direct Messaging solution with many advantages over conventional methods. The most beneficial option is to connect the HIway directly to an EHR, as this will allow you to send and receive messages directly from the EHR.