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What is CONNECT?

CONNECT is a software solution that facilitates the exchange of healthcare information at both the local and national level. CONNECT leverages eHealth Exchange standards and governance and Direct Project specifications to help drive interoperability across health information exchanges throughout the country. Initially developed by federal agencies to support specific healthcare-related missions, CONNECT is now available to all organizations as downloadable open source software.

CONNECT can be used to:

  • CONNECTSet up a eHealth Exchange-conformant health information exchange
  • Establish connectivity to a regional network of health information exchanges
  • Set up an HIE capable of exchanging messages using the Direct Project specifications
  • Monitor and review gateway-to-gateway messaging
  • Record and track ATNA-compliant audit logs
  • Act as a testing platform for other eHealth Exchange-compliant HIE systems

The CONNECT Solution

Three primary elements make up the CONNECT solution:

  • The Core Services Gateway provides the ability to locate patients at other organizations, request and receive documents associated with the patient, and record these transactions for subsequent auditing by patients and other actors on the eHealth Exchange. Other features include mechanisms for authenticating network participants, formulating and evaluating authorizations for the release of medical information, and honoring consumer preferences for sharing their information. The eHealth Exchange specifications are implemented within this component.
  • The Enterprise Service Components provide default implementations of many critical enterprise components required to support electronic health information exchange, including a master patient index (MPI), XDS.b document registry and repository, authorization policy engine, consumer preferences manager, HIPAA-compliant audit log and various other features. Implementers of CONNECT are free to adopt the components or use their own existing software for these purposes.
  • The System Administration Module is a user interface that allows implementers to easily manage CONNECT, track event and audit logs, configure Direct settings, monitor gateway traffic and test gateway-to-gateway connectivity and information exchange.