Massachusetts eHealth Institute Awards Vendor Grants to Advance & Accelerate Health Information Exchange

August 15, 2013
Source: 
Massachusetts Technology Collaborative

Funds Will Improve Connectivity & Increase Efficiency of the Mass HIway, While Reducing Startup Costs for Practitioners

Media Contact:
Brian Noyes, Communications Manager
Massachusetts Technology Collaborative
(508) 870-0312 X: 293; C: (206) 755-1509
noyes@masstech.org

BOSTON -- The Massachusetts eHealth Institute (MeHI) at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative today announced nearly $1.3 million in grants to fund projects that advance the interoperability of electronic health records with the Commonwealth’s health information exchange (HIE), called the Mass HIway.  

The primary goal of this competitive grant program, called the Mass HIway Vendor Interface Grant Program, is to accelerate connections to the HIE which will enable health care providers to more easily exchange information and therefore increase the impact of the HIway on every day care delivery. 

Grants were awarded to health IT vendors that support hospitals and health care organizations, with preference given to vendors in the electronic health record (EHR), clinical information system (CIS) and Care Management sectors that support physicians in small practices, long-term care, or in behavioral health settings, particularly those not covered by so-called ‘Meaningful Use’ incentives.  The grants will help diverse records systems connect to and exchange information on the HIway, improving the delivery of health care by providing a direct and secure link to the exchange.

“These grantees are helping health care practitioners across Massachusetts improve the delivery of high-quality, cost-effective health care through access to the Mass HIway,” said Pamela Goldberg, CEO of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. “These are leading Health IT companies, some of them located here in the Commonwealth, and their expertise will help hospitals and small health care vendors better exchange information, thereby improving the quality of care for Massachusetts citizens.”

The grantees chosen include:

 

Firm

Amount Awarded

Aprima Medical Software

$101,085

ClaimTrak

$150,000

ComChart

$50,000

DiCom Grid

$59,720

eClinical Works

$150,000

eHana

$150,000

HealthWyse

$75,000

McKesson

$92,600

MEDfx

$150,000

NexJ

$150,000

NoMoreClipboard

$51,940

Institutions around the Commonwealth that will work with these vendors and will benefit from these grants include: Individual physicians and physicians groups, community health centers, medical specialists such as orthopedists and pediatricians, visiting nurse associations, and home health care providers.  A sample set of these local beneficiaries include:

 

MEDfx | Mashpee Family Medicine | Mashpee, MA

Aprima | Elise Jacques, MD | Worcester, MA

ComChart | Shawsheen Medical Associates | Andover, MA

 

Federal guidelines require EHR systems to include data exchange capabilities that incorporate the Direct Standards, which aim to replace paper-based exchanges or those using proprietary interfaces with more advanced and cost-conscious electronic systems. These grants can accelerate development of a Direct-enabled records system and offset the cost of developing and implementing the interfaces.

“These awards move us another step closer toward our goal of having every provider in the Commonwealth connected to the HIway,” stated Laurance Stuntz, Director of the Massachusetts eHealth Institute at MassTech. “These grants will support providers across the state and in our most vulnerable care settings in adopting the HIway, which will fill in critical gaps in information sharing and move us closer to truly statewide adoption.”

In 2012, MeHI and the Executive Office of Health and Human Services launched the statewide health information exchange, the Mass HIway, allowing for secure electronic health information to be transmitted between health care providers and organizations.  MeHI works to advance the use and interoperability of electronic health records by supporting the Mass HIway Last Mile adoption program. As part of the Last Mile Program, the HIway Vendor Interface Grants are funded through the Office of the National Coordinator of Health IT at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

For more information, visit: http://dev-mehi.masstech.org/funding/past-funding.

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About the Massachusetts eHealth Institute

The Massachusetts eHealth Institute (MeHI) at the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative is the state's entity for health care innovation, technology, and competitiveness and is responsible for advancing the dissemination of health information technology throughout Massachusetts, including the deployment of electronic health records systems in all health care provider settings and connecting them through the statewide health information exchange. For more information, please visit mehi.masstech.org and follow @MassEHealth.

About the Mass HIway

The Massachusetts Health Information Highway (Mass HIway) is the Commonwealth’s secure statewide health information exchange. The Mass HIway enables the electronic movement of health related information among diverse organizations, such as doctors’ offices, hospitals, laboratories, pharmacies, skilled nursing facilities and health plans. The HIway facilitates the exchange of clinical information among varied health care information systems, while maintaining the meaning of the information being exchanged, regardless of provider affiliation, location or differences in technology. Using the HIway can give doctors and other clinicians a more comprehensive understanding of their patients’ full medical histories to inform a more complete delivery of their healthcare.