Groups partner to better leverage HIEs for population health, quality improvement

The Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative and Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement say the alliance will broaden their reach as they work to enable easier access to clinical, claims and social determinant data.
By Mike Miliard
03:05 PM
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The Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative and Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement will work together promote population health goals, quality improvement and cost reduction by tackling "different-yet-related aspects of healthcare," the groups said.

Regional healthcare improvement collaboratives, of which NRHI represents more than 30, are nonprofit organizations governed boards comprising providers, payers and purchasers and consumers. They can help those stakeholders explore innovative ways to improve healthcare in their communities and develop new strategies for more effective and efficient care delivery.  

[Also: What's next for health information exchanges?]

By providing technology infrastructure to share the data that's become so indispensable to healthcare, HIEs help RHICs and other groups work toward better patient care and population health. SHIEC represents more than 50 statewide, regional and community health information exchanges, which collectively serve about 75 percent of the U.S. population.

Dan Porreca, SHIEC's board chair and executive director of Buffalo, New York.-based HEALTHeLINK, said that SHIEC and NRHI "have similar missions with different areas of focus, each helping our communities achieve better, more efficient, and cost-effective patient care."

The new partnership "makes good sense because of the potential to allow both organizations to bring claims, clinical and social determinants of health data together faster, while learning from each other’s areas of strength and experiences," he said.

NRHI, for instance, is experienced in collecting and reporting on quality measures and cost data. It has designed various initiatives to help health systems improve their performance and works with employers and other purchasers as stewards of community-wide health data. SHIEC's member HIEs, meanwhile, have trusted data repositories and expertise in connectivity.

An initial focus of the new partnership will be to advance policies that support more widespread regional data sharing, spot new partnership opportunities among NRHI and SHIEC members and share best practices across members of both organizations.

"What makes NRHI and SHIEC members unique are their trusted positions in their communities," said Elizabeth Mitchell, president and CEO of NRHI. "Their deep local ties and records working for community benefit give them a level of credibility and knowledge that few other organizations can match."

Twitter: @MikeMiliardHITN
Email the writer: mike.miliard@himssmedia.com