Kaiser Permanente will test electronically exchanging data with the Social Security Administration to speed the processing of disability applications, becoming the 13th organization to participate.

The pilot with several Kaiser facilities in the San Diego region will cover a “significant” patient population, according the company. Kaiser and Social Security will test exchanging electronic health records data over the Nationwide Health Information Network. Explicit patient consent will be necessary before exchanging information.

Kaiser patients traditionally have had to go to an SSA office to complete paperwork, with the SSA then faxing a request for information to verify a claim of disability from Kaiser. The request would route to a regional health information management department, which would gather the materials and fax them to SSA.

More information on the administration’s health information exchange program is available here.

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