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Virginia, Hawaii Boost Statewide HIEs

February 14, 2012
by Gabriel Perna
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Even though they are geographically on opposite sides of the country, the states of Virginia and Hawaii have a lot of recent similarities when it comes to healthcare IT. Primarily, both states recently announced advancements to their health information exchanges (HIEs).

In Hawaii, Governor Neil Abercrombie and the Hawai‘i Health Information Exchange (Hawai‘i HIE) recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement outlining how Hawai‘i HIE and the state will collaborate to develop and implement a statewide HIE.  

“The Hawai‘i HIE has made tremendous progress in the last several years evaluating and determining the state’s infrastructure requirements that will support the transformation of Hawai‘i’s health care system. Finalizing our updated cooperative agreement with Hawai‘i HIE will ultimately result in improved health care for all Hawai‘i residents,” said Gov. Abercrombie in a statement.

Hawai‘i HIE announced as part of the ceremony that it has selected Medicity (Salt Lake City) as its health information exchange partner. Medicity will build the HIE in phases, beginning with a direct messaging function that allows the exchange of patient data between two health care providers and a referral application function that allows a physician or other health care providers to indicate what type of information they prefer when receiving a referred patient. 

Meanwhile, Warwick, R.I.-based MEDfx Corporation, which is a connected health portal, and Community Health Alliance, Inc., a Virginia-based not-for-profit, announced they will create Virginia’s HIE, ConnectVirginia. Community Health Alliance was awarded a contract from the Virginia Department of Health in Oct. 2011 to establish and operate Virginia's statewide HIE.

The combination of software and services from MEDfx will allow ConnectVirginia to provide a full range of HIE capabilities from one-way secure messaging to bi-directional query/retrieve. The direct messaging initiative will launch Feb. 17and will enable secure a one-way "push" of clinical information.

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