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Michigan’s HIE partners on post-acute care interoperability



The Michigan Health Information Network, the nonprofit statewide health information exchange, will integrate PointClickCare’s cloud-based software facilitating seamless, automated flow of patient data.

WHY IT MATTERS
MiHIN announced that its partnership with the largest post-acute electronic medical record vendor in the country will now enable 250 new post-acute providers and case managers to exchange real-time data through the HIE.

Despite widespread adoption of certified health information systems, many of Michigan’s long-term care facilities and emergency medical service providers have not been able to comprehensively leverage the state’s network.

MiHIN hopes to advance and deepen healthcare collaboration, care coordination and interoperability by offering access to real-time insights at any stage of a patient’s journey.

“PointClickCare will exchange post-acute health information throughout our shared digital infrastructure at an unmatched pace and scale, helping to tie the gaps of post-acute care into the integration and connection of the care continuum,” said Dr. Tim Pletcher, executive director of MiHIN, in the announcement.

The partnership “will equip participating Michigan hospitals with unprecedented context on emergency department patients at the point of care,” added Dr. Ben Zaniello, chief medical officer at PointClickCare.

PointClickCare’s emergency department optimization will also be available to hospitals across the state for clinicians delivering care to vulnerable patient groups, like expectant mothers, those experiencing health inequities, those being transitioned from post-acute care and those impacted by opioids.

That platform enables emergency departments to access prior patient encounters histories and interorganizational patient care plans in real-time to support their high-risk patients.

THE LARGER TREND
HIEs have a key role to play in public health reporting, particularly where regional laws vary.

California’s 2022 single data sharing agreement, mandated by law, addresses an information exchange ecosystem that is often fragmented and siloed across the state.

“Data exchange is incredibly local, and I think we all know that,” explained Timi Leslie, founder of BluePath Health and a leader at Connecting for Better Health, in a recent HIMSSCast podcast on the Golden State’s requirement for real-time exchange of treatment, payment and healthcare operations information sharing by 2024.

The COVID-19 pandemic showed the significant gaps in the state’s healthcare data interoperability, said Leslie, noting that there are a number of blueprints from other states to follow.

“The regional HIE entities know their health system landscape and can navigate the key players, engage public health organizations in dialogue with health system leadership, and can develop interfaces that connect the health system players together,” Brian Dixon, a research scientist at Regenstrief Institute, told Healthcare IT News in 2019.

The enduring value, especially as HIEs work in concert with other vendor-driven interoperability efforts, is how they deepen healthcare collaboration. Experts have long pointed to the fact that HIEs can notify providers about clinical events, making them a useful utility.

“The fact that the EHRs are more ubiquitous and the fact that they have better interoperability capabilities…those are all assets in the equation of making the nation more interoperable,” said John Kansky, president and CEO of Indiana Health Information Exchange, when Healthcare IT News was reporting on the enduring value of HIEs, even as vendor-driven networks such as the CommonWell Health Alliance gained maturity. 

“But what’s often forgotten is that if you go looking for the people that have the last mile wired and/or have the data available – and in some cases have it in normalized, curated repositories, ready to be exchanged – it’s the HIEs,” said Kansky.

ON THE RECORD
“We anticipate this partnership will support optimized care delivery, safety, and coordination for patients, and will significantly improve outcomes and lower costs associated with particularly vulnerable populations,” said Pletcher.

Andrea Fox is senior editor of Healthcare IT News.
Email: afox@himss.org

Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS publication.



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