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Various Regions Selected for CommonWell Interoperability Pilot

December 11, 2013
by Gabriel Perna
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Four locations across the country have been selected by CommonWell Health Alliance, a health information technology (HIT) vendor-led interoperability effort, to test initial interoperability services from the collaborative.

Chicago, Ill., Elkin and Henderson, N.C., and Columbia, S.C. are the four locations where CommonWell will aim to connect regional, disparate providers. Lake Shore Obstetrics & Gynecology (Chicago, Ill.), Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital (Elkin, N.C.), Maria Parham Medical Center (Henderson, N.C.), Midlands Orthopaedics (Columbia, S.C.), and Palmetto Health (Columbia, S.C.) have been listed as participating provider sites in this pilot.

"Regions within Illinois, North Carolina and South Carolina were chosen because they provide a good footprint of the Alliance's founding member companies' health IT systems, along with a strong desire among clients to make interoperability a reality. We have the right players on board, and we're eager and committed to improve care coordination through advancing data liquidity,” stated Jeremy Delinsky, chairman of the board for the CommonWell Health Alliance and chief technology officer at athenahealth.

The pilot is slated to start at the beginning of 2014. CommonWell says the participating providers will be enroll patients into the service and managing patient consent protocol, identify whether other provider participants have data for a patient that is enrolled in the network when the patient is at their setting of care, and transition data to another provider that has consent to view data on that enrolled patient.

The locations will have different focuses in terms of interoperability. In North Carolina, the launch will focus on exchanging patient data between acute and ambulatory practices. In Chicago, it will be on multiple ambulatory practices using a cross section of health IT systems.

Ultimately, CommonWell says it will expand upon this initial set of participants. The preliminary results from this initial service will be presented at the Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) Annual Conference & Exhibition to be held in February 2014.

CommonWell is made up of founding members Allscripts, athenahealth, Cerner, CPSI, Greenway, McKesson and Sunquest along with RelayHealth. Computer Programs and Systems, Inc. (CPSI) and Sunquest Information Systems joined in July

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