Tennessee builds statewide health information network

By Richard Pizzi
12:00 AM

Tennessee has chosen a vendor to provide electronic health record software and e-prescribing technology for the new statewide health information network, called the Tennessee Information Network.

The Tennessee Department of Health will continue its partnership with Shared Health, Inc., a Chattanooga, Tenn.-based healthcare IT vendor. Shared Health currently provides EHR access for all beneficiaries of TennCare, Tennessee's Medicaid program. That partnership has now expanded to include collaboration with the Tennessee Information Network, or TNII initiative.

Shared Health and the Tennessee Department of Health will enable doctors to access patient medical histories and immunizations and prescribe medications electronically through secure broadband connectivity. An analysis by the state concluded that many physicians did not have broadband connectivity to facilitate the movement of large images and telemedicine applications.

TNII intends to offer all providers appropriately secure broadband connectivity.

"By bringing secure broadband over a dedicated healthcare network, clinicians across the state will have an additional option of accessing Shared Health's rich content," said Jana Skewes, president and chief executive officer of Shared Health. "This could mean faster diagnosis time, less laboratory tests and better outcomes."


"Through our existing partnership with more than 2 million Tennessee consumers who are already enrolled in Shared Health's Health Information Exchange, we are pleased to join the TNII network," added Skewes.

This and other eHealth initiatives in Tennessee are being led by the Governor's eHealth Advisory Council.

"We are pleased to have Shared Health provide their services over TNII, so that all licensed Tennessee clinicians have the opportunity to connect to this interoperable and valuable set of health care data," said Antoine Agassi, chairman of the eHealth Council.

Shared Health is the largest public/private health information exchange in the United States