News Release ShareThis
BASKING RIDGE, N.J. – July 14, 2010 –
One of the biggest obstacles to sharing patient information electronically is that health care systems and providers use a wide range of incompatible IT platforms and software to create and store data in various formats. A new service - the Verizon Health Information Exchange - will soon be available via the "cloud" to address this challenge.
The Verizon Health Information Exchange, one of the first services of its kind in the U.S., will consolidate clinical patient data from providers and translate it into a standardized format that can be securely accessed over the Web. Participating exchange providers across communities, states and regions will be able to request patient data via a secure online portal, regardless of the IT systems and specific protocols the providers use. This will enable providers to obtain a more complete view of a patient's health history, no matter where the data is stored.
Having more information at their fingertips will help providers reduce medical errors and duplicative testing, control administrative costs and, ultimately, enhance patient safety and treatment outcomes. Since the monthly charges are based on a provider's patient-record volume, the service is economical.
(Note - Listen to an audio podcast on Verizon Health Information Exchange.)
"By breaking down the digital silos within the U.S. health care delivery system, the Verizon Health Information Exchange will address many of the interoperability barriers that prevent sharing of clinical data between physicians, clinics, hospitals and payers," said Kannan Sreedhar, vice president and global managing director, Verizon Connected Health Care Solutions. "Providing secure access to patient data will enable health care organizations to make a quantum leap forward in the deployment of IT to meet critical business and patient-care issues."
Adoption of health information exchanges is expected to grow as a result of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. As of March, 56 federal grants totaling $548 million have been awarded to states to facilitate and expand the secure electronic movement and use of health information among organizations, using nationally recognized standards.
Because the Verizon Health Information Exchange will be delivered via Verizon's cloud computing platform, health care organizations will be able to use their current IT systems, processes and workflows, without large additional capital expenditures. The service will be ideal for large and small health care providers.
The Verizon Health Information Exchange will use strong identity access management controls to provide security for sensitive patient information. Only authorized users will have access to patient clinical data.
To build out the solution, Verizon will leverage the capabilities of several key technology and service providers - MEDfx, MedVirginia and Oracle - to deliver key features of the service including: clinical dashboard , record locator service, cross-enterprise patient index and secure clinical messaging.
"The ability to dynamically scale technical resources and pay for those used are key benefits of health information exchange platforms hosted in the cloud," said Lynne A. Dunbrack, program director, IDC Health Insights. "Cloud-based platforms will appeal to small to mid-sized organizations looking to shift technology investment from cap-ex to op-ex and to large regional or statewide initiatives that need to establish connectivity with myriad stakeholders with divergent needs and interoperability requirements."
Among the enterprise clients planning to adopt Verizon's new platform is MedVirginia, a long-time health care pioneer serving central Virginia. Formed in 2000 by a consortium of Virginia health care providers, the Richmond-based organization has long focused on initiatives to improve the quality, safety and efficiency of health care through IT innovations, including the 2006 launch of MedVirginia Solution®, a community-based health information exchange.
"Based on our track record of success, MedVirginia projects continued growth in the expanding marketplace for health IT," said Michael Matthews, chief executive officer of MedVirginia and chairman of the NHIN Coordinating Committee administered by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology. "Our current and future needs require enhanced functionality, flexibility, performance and scalability, and the cloud-based Verizon Health Information Exchange meets those requirements."
Verizon Health Information Exchange will also meet stringent federal standards for privacy, including provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. In addition, the platform will comply with the requirements of the Nationwide Health Information Network, a collection of standards, protocols, legal agreements, specifications and services overseen by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to support the secure exchange of health information over the Internet.
The Verizon Health Information Exchange is the latest in a series of initiatives that the company has implemented to help accelerate the use of technology in health care. For example, in March, Verizon Business launched the Verizon Medical Data Exchange, and last November, the company introduced Verizon Telehealth Collaboration Services.
Visit the Verizon Connected Healthcare Solutions website for more information.
Kevin W. Irland, 703-886-1117
If the press release above doesn't make any sense, check out the below video by clicking the Verizon picture below or clicking this Verizon link. The video is really interesting around the 4:08 minute mark, because the Verizon official says that the system will collect patient information from the doctors connected to the system. The system will then send the patient information through the CareEngine®. The CareEngine® is basically "business intelligence from a clinical perspective." I would call it operations research from a clinical perspective, but hey, what do I know.
Once the CareEngine® completes its task, the system messages the physician and tells the doctor whether or not the doctor's patient diagnosis is accurate or whether the doctor should try other methods. Based on that assertion, it appears to me that the computer is now the doctor.
If the computer is programmed with "death panel instructions" (or algorithms and artificial intelligence written for the same purpose) designed to decrease medical costs, there may be some conflicts when the doctor wants to prescribe an expensive course of treatment, but the CareEngine® says that it is not cost effective. Also, if something corrupts the system, the system might potentially provide inaccurate information to the doctors.
The technology involving the CareEngine by Active Health Management (including the patent) is also discussed below, so knock yourself out reviewing it if you like technology.
Verizon's Health Information Exchange
Whether you are looking to locate patient health records within your own extended enterprise or electronically exchange healthcare information within your surrounding community, state, or nation, Verizon Health Information Exchange (HIE) can help you improve access to patient information and achieve your goals.
Physicians, payers and patients need access to a patient’s consolidated health record at the time and place of care, which is exactly how Verizon's HIE delivers it – anytime, virtually anywhere there is an Internet connection. Not only does this help healthcare providers make more informed care decisions, but because our solution is cloud-based and delivered as-a-service, you can benefit from increased efficiencies and cost control.
The Verizon video above says that the Brooklyn Health Information Exchange funded some of these systems and programs.
The BHIX mission is to support the advancement of healthcare information technology and maintain a secure clinical data information exchange for the benefit of the people of the State of New York.
Our patented technology, called the CareEngine® System, compiles member data from a variety of sources such as medical and pharmacy claims, lab results and information provided directly from the member. The CareEngine analyzes this information against highly respected sources of evidence-based medicine to identify gaps in care, medical errors and quality issues.
Lastly, if you are a true techie, here is the U.S. Patent 6,802,810 that describes and explains the CareEngine® System technology.