• November 2014
  • Vol. 15, No. 10

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Confidentiality Toolkit Guides Cross-System Interoperability

New technologies and data systems have the capability of supporting cross-systems collaboration through improved information sharing among agencies, but only if the needed data are entered into the system. However, concerns about confidentiality requirements can often hinder data collection efforts.

To support efforts to improve the level of interoperability, the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families (ACF) created ACF's Interoperability Initiative. The Initiative has produced a new toolkit to provide guidance to States on improving the level of information sharing in the context of the laws and rules that govern confidentiality in ACF-supported programs. The toolkit specifically addresses how States can effectively share information among agencies that provide services to families while maintaining necessary levels of confidentiality.

For each program, applicable Federal legislation and regulations are described. In addition, the toolkit provides examples of how confidentiality requirements can be addressed and met in a manner fully consistent with governing laws and underlying policies. Sample Memoranda of Understanding and data sharing agreements also are provided.

Confidentiality Toolkit: A Resource Tool From the ACF Interoperability Initiative is available on the ACF website:

https://www.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/assets/acf_confidentiality_toolkit_final_08_12_2014.pdf (2 MB)

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