NH Health Information Organization Receives Federal HIE Grant

NH-HIOThe New Hampshire Health Information Organization (NHHIO), a non-profit, announced that it has been awarded funds by the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) as part of ONC’s health information technology (HIT) grant program. Funding will be used to help behavioral health, home health and long term post-acute care organizations overcome barriers to health information exchange (HIE) adoption, resulting in improved care coordination across the state of New Hampshire.

“We are thrilled to receive this funding and take it as a vote of confidence in NHHIO’s capabilities and its value to provider organizations in New Hampshire,” said Mary Beth Eldredge, NHHIO Board Chair and Director, Regional Information Systems, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. “We are excited to use these funds to extend care coordination capabilities to underserved organizations that haven’t been able to receive the support or incentives that typically drive HIT and HIE adoption.”

NHHIO was awarded the grant under the Advance Interoperable Health Information Technology Services to Support Health Information Exchange program, a two-year cooperative agreement. The program has provided $29.6 million to support the efforts of 12 states or state designated entities to expand the adoption of health information exchange technology, tools, and services. With the funds in place, NHHIO will enact a two-pronged approach to rapidly accelerate HIE adoption. NHHIO will expand education and outreach activities through webinar training and on-site local expertise, and will also provide HIE grants to progressive organizations.

“New Hampshire has made remarkable strides in HIT adoption, but a new catalyst was needed to drive the flow of information out to the smaller, community-based and non-eligible provider organizations inthe state,” said John E. Poirier, President and CEO, New Hampshire Health Care Association. “As such, we are eager to use these funds to increase participation in NHHIO with these types of organizations, and better serve our patient population.”

As part of the Obama Administration’s efforts to create an interoperable learning health system that achieves better care, smarter spending and healthier people, the ONC announced last week twenty awardees for three health information technology grant programs totaling about $38 million. The grants build on programs funded from the Health Information Technology and Clinical Health Act (HITECH), part of the American Recovery and Revitalization Act (ARRA) of 2009. These grants will further HHS’s efforts to improve the way providers are paid, improve and innovate in care delivery, and share information more broadly to providers, consumers, and others to support better health care decisions while maintaining privacy.

“We are very excited for our members to participate in NHHIO, as the ability to electronically exchange information in a timely manner will greatly benefit our patients,” said Roland Lamy, Board Chair, New Hampshire Behavioral Health Association. “We are also glad that NHHIO made mental health organizations a priority and recognizes the need to engage our organizations to best serve the entire patient population in New Hampshire.”

About the New Hampshire Health Information Organization (NHHIO)

NHHIO is a 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization created by legislation whose mission is to securely connect healthcare communities to share patient health information needed for informed care decisions. We collaborate with hospitals, physicians, community health centers, long term care providers, home care providers and other clinicians involved in the delivery of healthcare. Our vision is to become New Hampshire’s trusted resource for health information exchange, improving quality, efficiency and patient safety while reducing healthcare costs. To learn more about NHHIO and its services, please visit us at www.nhhio.org