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September-October 2012

From the Executive Director

McCrary_Laura_webLaura McCrary Ed.D

As KHIN approaches its second birthday, some significant accomplishments are worth noting. Most importantly health information exchange is happening today in Kansas. As of October 20th, 70,000 patients now have life saving health information in the exchange and 3040 providers have DIRECT addresses and can securely share patient information. Most of the patients are from the Wichita area. However, in the next 60 days Hutchinson Clinic, HaysMed and Pratt Regional Medical Center will be bringing their patients into the exchange and 20 more facilities will move data into the exchange before the end of the year including most of the GPHA hospitals and the four Via Christi Health System hospitals in Pittsburgh, Wamego, Manhattan and McPherson. Lastly, the University of Kansas is now testing data to bring into the KHIN exchange. By the end of the year KHIN's goal is to have one million patients in the exchange.

After crisscrossing Kansas for two years I have come to the conclusion that two qualities best describe the providers in Kansas; heartfelt caring and rugged individualism. I believe it is because of these qualities that health information exchange in Kansas is growing rapidly. Kansas health care providers want to provide the very best care possible for the Kansas people and health information exchange is of critical importance when providers must communicate important health information across the vast plains of Kansas and into our surrounding states. Lastly, KHIN is successful because it is provider led and governed. Kansas providers want to know that something as important as the exchange is safe for their families and patients and it is managed in a manner they can have input into and support.

The KHIN team is working hard to lay out the plans for the connections necessary for our Certificate of Authority with KHIE including the connection with the Lewis and Clark Health Information Exchange (LACIE) for secure messaging and to query patients in each other's exchanges. We have also completed the technical work to send immunizations to WebIZ and are beginning to test the data submissions with the Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas as well as COMCARE in Salina. Lastly, the work to send syndromic surveillance data to BioSense is well underway and is expected to be complete by the end of the year.

As always, if you have questions or would like for me to visit your facility as I continue to drive across our beautiful state please reach out and contact me at lmccrary@khinonline.org.

KHIN seeking vendor to provide patient portal

Stethoscope On_A_Keyboard9Over the last month KHIN has been working with a small group of Kansas providers to develop a national Request for Proposals (RFP) for a patient portal and personal health record technology that will be fully integrated with the KHIN health information exchange. 

Read more...

Kansas HIE global opt-out update

bigstock stethoscope_on_the_stack_of_pa_12959048On June 1, 2012 the Kansas Health Information Exchange, Inc. (KHIE) began implementation of the global opt out process for those patients who did not want to participate in health information exchange in Kansas. Kansas, as stipulated by the Kansas Health Information Technology Exchange Act, is an opt-out state. This means that patients must take proactive action to opt themselves out of the exchange. Patients are provided notice that their health care providers participate in health information exchange through revisions to the practice's notice of privacy practices NPP as well as posters, flyers and brochures that are available in the reception and admit area. Patients are then responsible for contacting KHIE to complete the necessary paperwork to opt out of the exchange.

Generally, states or regional health information exchange organizations that adopt an opt-out model see approximately 2% of the total population choosing to opt out of the exchange. This is true for Nebraska and for Colorado. Both of these states have been providing health information exchange for their providers and participants for over 18 months. Opt –in states, where a patient has to provide a specific written consent generally have about 4% of the patients who opt-out by not signing the paperwork.

In Kansas, as of October 5th 179 patients have opted out of the exchange. These are very low numbers and are due in part to the fact that many health care organizations are not yet displaying the KHIE materials that describe the opt out procedure since they are not yet integrating data. However, HCA Wesley, Via Christi Health, HaysMed, Pratt Regional Medical Center, Hutchinson Clinic and several GPHA hospitals have all been sharing the opt out information with their patients. So there has been a significant effort to make sure that patients are informed regarding the opt-out process.

Overall, this opt-out rate is very good news for health information exchange in Kansas. KHIE announced that public service announcements regarding the value of HIE will begin in Kansas after January 1, 2013. This may prompt more opt-outs. This newsletter will provide regular updates regarding the state opt out rate.

For more information please contact Terri Kennedy at tkennedy@khie.org.

KHIN to sponsor new user group

Typing hands_stethoscopeAt the October 10th KHIN Board Meeting the KHIN Board endorsed the establishment of the KHIN TAG (Technical Advisory Group). The mission of the group is the following:

Inspired to improve the health and wellness of the people of Kansas, the KHIN TAG shall serve as a statewide association of HIT professionals to foster the successful participation, adoption and development of the Kansas Health Information Network.

The group has five core goals:

  1. Promote meaningful contribution, adoption and usage of the KHIN system.
  2. Share useful information, best practices, strategies, methodologies and technology.
  3. Encourage the adoption of established and emerging industry standards.
  4. Recommend and influence upcoming development of KHIN functionality and technology.
  5. Foster a collaborative membership that provides general support and advice to each other in their KHIN activities.

The proposed structure is as follows:

  1. Quarterly in-person meetings hosted by members across Kansas.
  2. On-Line Meeting option for those unable to travel.
  3. Online forum for members to post questions, documentation and have discussions with other members.
  4. KHIN will provide administrative support for the User Group.
  5. All KHIN Participating health care providers are welcome to participate.
  6. Officers will be elected/appointed from KHIN Participating health care providers.

To participate contact Dave Gestenslager at dave.gestenslager@viachristi.org or Laura McCrary at lmccrary@khinonline.org.

KHIN provider portal now available

KHIN-Logo-on-art-backgroundIf you share patients with other health care providers in Kansas the KHIN Provider Portal provides a secure, safe and quick way to exchange health information with all providers that care for the patient. Hospitals, physicians and other health care providers who are KHIN members can query the exchange for a patient they care for and receive information back from other providers that also care for that patient regarding their diagnosis, procedures, medications, lab results, demographic information, immunizations and clinical summaries. This replaces the FAX machine and helps to provide a comprehensive record of the patient's medical history.

It is not necessary to have an electronic health record (EHR) to utilize the KHIN Provider Portal and Secure Messaging. If a health care provider has a computer and internet they can access the secure KHIN website to search for their patient's information and securely email other health care providers throughout Kansas and eventually across the nation.

KHIN uses a train the trainer approach to learn how to use the portal and will schedule a Webinar at the practice's convenience. In turn, they can train others at the practice. Training takes between 30minutes to an hour. For more information regarding the KHIN Provider Portal or training please contact Tiffanie Hickman at thickman@khinonline.org.

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