Newly Formed Alliance to Create Open Source Healthcare Sandbox

Four of the largest organizations in health IT join forces to advance interoperability, collaboration

East Lansing Michigan, UNITED STATES

ANN ARBOR, Mich., March 30, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Interoperability Institute (IOI) announced that it has joined forces with Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) USA, Interopion and Red Hat to create InterOp.Community, an emerging effort to advance the healthcare interoperability agenda via the use of open platforms and open-source software. 

IOI presently supports Interoperability Land™, a safe, collaborative, simulated healthcare environment available in the AWS Marketplace, but has increasingly realized the need to advance an open-source complement to that environment not only to engage and support the development community, but to convene stakeholders from across the Health IT (HIT) landscape interested in advancing health interoperability. 

Interop.Community is intended to be an industry convergence point and incubator, and IOI will both invest in that work and draw from it to mature its original Interoperability Land™ offering.

“IOI is delighted to be working with IHE USA, Interopion and Red Hat on this new alliance,” said Mary Kratz, Executive Vice President of Interoperability Institute. “We welcome others that share this enthusiasm for openness, transparency, trust, and eagerness to join this effort as co-equals to build upon and advance this community asset.  IOI is committed to an open ‘meritocracy’ consistent with thriving open source communities, as well as commercially friendly open source licensing.  This would assure that participants and consumers alike would have access and latitude to use the outputs of this work as they see fit, including commercial and academic purposes. Together, we are working diligently to launch this shared digital space that will allow for advanced interoperability testing and development across different organizations and systems.”

A sandbox is a virtual environment that allows collaborators to design, test and prototype software in an isolated manner, allowing them to innovate with all the tools of the enterprise environment and none of the overhead. InterOp.Community will provide standards driven interfaces for the common components in modern healthcare systems such as electronic health records (EHR), hospitals, health information exchanges (HIE), labs and insurers, serving as a technology incubator to advance global and interoperable health solutions.

“Interopion recognizes the importance of mobilizing and engaging the community in support of this open source sandbox. As such our intention is to form an open source meritocracy with Interoperability Institute based upon established best practices from the community,” said Rick Freeman, President and CEO of Interopion. “Simulated environments like InterOp.Community are revolutionizing health care, including the way that we combat and track the spread of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Interopion is honored to partner with other forward-thinking HIT stakeholders to accelerate interoperability by providing access to critical technology.”

InterOp.Community will act as a next generation proving ground in the Cloud, complete with tools to help build, launch, and test health apps as well as model real world healthcare scenarios with synthetic data.

“We, collectively, are committed to transforming healthcare through the advancement of interoperability,” said Joyce Sensmeier, MS, RN-BC, FHIMSS, FAAN, Senior Advisor of Informatics at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) and IHE USA President. “IHE USA is proud to be partnering with this initiative to accelerate the delivery of innovative healthcare applications that will improve health and healthcare. We look forward to advancing the innovation that will come from this community sandbox.”

The initial stages of deployment of InterOp.Community are already underway. The sandbox is expected to be launched during the second quarter of 2021. 

“As the largest open source company in the world, we believe using an open development model helps create more stable, secure, and innovative technologies. At Red Hat, we’ve spent more than two decades collaborating on community projects and protecting open source licenses so we can continue to develop software that pushes the boundaries of technological ability,” said Ben Cushing, Chief Technology Officer for Federal Health at Red Hat. “InterOp.Community is the embodiment of these principles, and Red Hat is proud to be a participant and partner with the Interoperability Institute as they embrace decentralized, collaborative, and transparent development. InterOp.Community is a unique sandbox, built for global healthcare innovators to converge and solve some of the toughest challenges facing providers, payers, and patients."

Upon completion of the community sandbox, Interoperability Institute plans to showcase the offering at events such as Interopathons, where individuals can gather and efficiently test their applications.

For additional information or to learn more about InterOp.Community or the Alliance, click here.


About Interoperability Institute
Interoperability Institute focuses on creating communities and environments that accelerate the adoption of interoperability in ways that result in greater health and more impactful delivery of human services through developing solutions and the next generation workforce to enable organizations and communities to harness the benefits of interoperability at scale. The Institute is as a limited liability company with the Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services (MiHIN) as the sole member. For more information, visit





01-IOI Community Sandbox release-FINAL.pdf

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