Patients in Centura Health Emergency Rooms Benefitting from HIE

Date: February 19th, 2014Category: CORHIO e-NewsletterTopics: HIE, Colorado Hospitals & Health Systems, Emergency Services

APEX Emergency Group physicians at select Colorado hospitals now have instant access to health records via CORHIO.

Physicians in five Centura Health emergency departments, staffed by APEX Emergency Group, are now accessing their patients’ lab results and health histories from the CORHIO health information exchange (HIE) network, which includes clinical data on more than 3.2 million unique patients in Colorado. When emergency room physicians can instantly pull up a patient’s longitudinal health record, they can more quickly diagnose and treat patients as well as potentially prevent life-threatening complications including drug interactions and allergic reactions.

“With health information exchange, physicians no longer have to worry about missing an important piece of information, which otherwise might be difficult to track down,” says Robert Schmidt, MD, emergency department physician with APEX Emergency Group. “CORHIO has already improved patient care in our ERs by increasing access to patient information and reducing the duplication of tests. As more hospitals and providers across the state connect to the HIE, we'll see even more dramatic improvements in patient care.”

Other Hospital ERs Also Using HIE

In addition to Centura Health, emergency room physicians at other hospitals and health systems are also using the CORHIO HIE to access information at the point of care. This includes Banner Health (5 hospitals), HealthONE (8 hospitals, as of December 2014), UC Health (5 hospitals), SCL Health (3 hospitals, as of May 2014), Boulder Community Hospital, Evans Army Community Hospital, Longmont United Hospital, and Parkview Medical Center.

HIE Reduces Duplicative Tests, Saves Time and Improves Care

Health information exchange systems can be extremely beneficial in the emergency department, which requires rapid high-stakes decision-making. According to a recent study from emergency physicians at the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, 90 percent of participating clinicians said using an HIE helped to improve quality of patient care. The study also cites that usage of an HIE shaves off valuable minutes during treatment – an average of 105 minutes per patient. Length of treatment time can be an extremely important factor in whether the patient survives the emergency.

“Patients that end up in the emergency room are vulnerable and often unable to relay vital pieces of information about their health, including current medications and recent lab results,” says Kelly Joines, interim CEO at CORHIO. “We’re very excited that these emergency physicians now have immediate access to critical patient information. This can significantly impact the course of treatment and has the potential to save lives.”

Also see: Hospitals Participating in Health Information Exchange Order Fewer Redundant Tests