Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Connecting to CORHIO HIE

CORHIO, a nonprofit public/private partnership was designated by the State of Colorado to facilitate the state’s Health Information Exchange. Initially, CORHIO received two grants to launch the statewide HIE including a substantial grant from the Colorado Health Foundation and $10.894 million from an ARRA HITECH grant.

Today, Boulder County has four of its five major hospitals and a specialty practice actively connected to Colorado’s CORHIO health information exchange. Recently, Longmont United Hospital connected to CORHIO’s secure network joining Avista Adventist Hospital, Boulder Community Hospital, and Boulder Community Foothills Hospital. So far 18 hospitals are connected to CORHIO’s network with ten hospitals working to implement an agreement.

To better address public health issues, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and CORHIO have collaborated to help hospitals streamline disease by implementing automated electronic lab reporting for diseases such as salmonella and pneumococcal infection.

CORHIO is building a direct interface to CDPHE that will automate the reporting process for hospitals already implementing the HIE. Currently, reports are submitted to the CDPHE in various formats including online entry into a web-based disease reporting system or by fax.

Based on a CDPHE survey of four Denver hospitals, CORHIO estimates that electronic lab reporting could help save hospitals over $9,000 in staff time per year by reducing the tracking and manual reporting for lab results. Reporting lab messages to public health via CORHIO will also help hospitals meet Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements.

Now both national and regional laboratories will be able to send lab results through the CORHIO HIE such as LabCorp and Quest Diagnostics which are the two largest laboratories in the nation, as well as Pathology Associates Medical Laboratories (PAML) a large regional lab. LabCorp, Quest, and PAML have partnered with Centura Health to deliver lab services through a joint venture called Colorado Laboratory Services and have recently signed letters of intent with CORHIO.