Sunday, August 22, 2010

State Moving Towards HIE

Provider and vendor-hosted networked systems are ready to meet local and regional HIE needs in Washington State. However, a common shared infrastructure has yet to be developed to support statewide HIE. The Health Care Authority (HCA) is developing a state wide HIE Strategic and Operational Plan that will include the “State Medicaid Health Information Technology Plan” (SMHP). SMHP is a collaborative effort with the State Medicaid Purchasing Administration (MPA) and HCA.

MPA issued a “Request for Qualifications/Quotations” (RFQQ) and invited proposals from qualified bidders to help develop the SMHP with $400,000 in funding available. Proposals were due by July 11nd. The project requires experience with Medicaid and HIT.

The deliverables of this contract include an “as-is” assessment of the HIT environment, the state future vision for HIT, a plan to implement and administer the EHR incentive program, a HIT Road Map for Washington Medicaid, and a draft Advanced Planning Document. The bidders selected must be able to fully integrate SMHP with the State HIT Plan.

For details, go to or contact Angela Williams at

In another project the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services issued a RFQQ the beginning of August for a consultant to make recommendations on a project to study the Pay-for-Performance Payment Subsidy System. The evaluation needs to include a review of the CMS demonstration project to explore the feasibility of P4P systems in Medicare certified nursing facilities. The RFQQ is due August 27, 2010.

In 2010, the legislature directed DSHS to contract with an outside entity to review pay-for-performance strategies used in other states to sustain and enhance quality improvement efforts in nursing facilities. The legislature has appropriated $200,000 for this project, however, the contract will be awarded contingent upon the availability of funding.

For details, go to

Washington State has been actively advancing telehealth and broadband technologies for several years. In March, an $84.3 million grant was awarded from the Department of Commerce through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program. The funding will enable NoaNet to deliver broadband capabilities to some of the more remote regions of the state.

In another project, the Washington Telehealth Exchange coordinated by the Association of Washington Public Hospital Districts is evaluating proposals for the FCC’s first phase of the Rural Health Care Broadband Pilot program. The Exchange is going to work with the Statewide HIE to coordinate efforts in telehealth, telemedicine, and exchanging electronic clinical data.