REC Update – South Atlantic

The 62 Regional Extension Centers are located in 9 regional areas. This post is checking in on the South Atlantic region and its four states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and ten centers. Having now viewed more than half of the REC sites, I find them overall uninformative and quite frankly hard to find! I did however find my favorite logo so far. I am not sure what that even says about all of this.

Florida – South Florida REC, Miami
This REC is a collaboration lead by the South Florida Health Information Exchange (SFHIE) and Health Choice Network (HCN) and serves Broward, Dade, Indian River, Monroe, Martin, St. Lucie, Palm Beach and Okeechobee. The home page member meter says they currently have 416 professionals enrolled in their program. Complete their form to enroll. Subscribe to their email alerts. The latest alert invites you to the HIMSS South Florida Healthcare Trade Faire & Regional Conference.

Florida – University of Central Florida REC, Orlando
The UCF-REC is run by the UCF College of Medicine and serves the greater Central Florida. The website still displays it is under construction on every page and much like the other university run RECs, the website gives little information or incentive for a physician to join in. To their credit they have acquired a unique URL for the REC. They also appear to be delayed in selecting Specialized Personnel Services (SPS)  and EHR Vendors.

Florida –The Center for the Advancement of Health IT (AHIT-REC)
The Community Health Centers Alliance in St. Petersburg heads up this extensive collaboration for serving northern and rural Florida. The five service areas are defined and mapped on the site. The REC information is found on the CHCA website. Responses to RFPs for  Provider Recruitment and Community Liaisons closed on October 6. The web site shows no selections at this point. They call the CMS Final Rule, “Meaningful Use Guidance” and a short webinar, “Quickinar”.

Florida – Paperfree Florida, Tampa
University of South Florida Health representing educational programs in medicine, nursing, public health and pharmacy is joining with Healthy Ocala and Florida Academy of Family Physicians, among others to create “PaperFree Florida Collaborative Regional Extension Center”. Although the web site looks nice there is really no information for EPs. The overview is a PDF, they never define their service area, the “latest news” is April 13th, they are looking for an Assistant Program Director which they posted on 10/9 and appears to be still open. There is no information on vendors or EHRs they will be working with.

Georgia – GA-HITREC
Morehouse School of Medicine, National Center for Primary Care and The Association of Clinicians for the underserved heads up the REC serving the state of Georgia. View their presentation on Meaningful Use –  they do a good job of explaining EHR adoption in Georgia and becoming a meaningful user. They have set up a Group Purchasing Plan (GPP) for participating EPs. The plan includes  vetted, certified EHR vendors and supporting technology and services. The GPP also includes pre-negotiated, discounted group pricing, contracts terms, and Service Level agreements. Current vendors in the GPP are Greenway, Medical Informatics Engineering (MIE), NextGen, E-Clinical Works, and eMDs. The web site is a bit confusing as it is part of the NCPC main site. A fun feature on all of the pages tells you how many guests are online.

North Carolina – North Carolina REC
NC Area Health Education Centers, UNC Chapel Hill was awarded the REC serving the state of NC. Just finding their web site is a challenge of its own. You can’t even find a direct link on the NC AHEC site! Once you do find the site their is a sign in and password box. Here’s hoping if you have a log in, there is some helpful information for you.

South Carolina – CITIA-SC
The Center for Information Technology Implementation Assistance (CITIA) is South Carolina’s regional extension center for health information technology. The grant was awarded to Health Sciences South Carolina. The REC’s landing page is the same format as NC. Here’s hoping they too have more for the people who have log in access.

Washington, DC – eHealthDC
eHealthDC, DC’s REC, will support more than 1,000 healthcare providers with the adoption and meaningful use of EHRs. DC Primary Care Association and its partner Clinovations will serve as a neutral source for credible EHR and HIT information. They are working with AmericanEHR Partners to create a Vendor Affiliate Program. Their plan includes selecting five vendors. To date they have selected 3, Allscripts, eClinicalWorks, and Greenway Medical. The final two will include low cost or alternative EHR solutions for smaller practices. The web site lists services and membership benefits, contact them to become a member. And A+ on the logo, so far the best one I have seen.

Washington, DC – AI/AN National REC (National Indian Health Board)
The only online reference to this REC is a document to Tribal Leaders, Area Health Board Executive Directors, and Tribal Health Center Directors on September 23, 2010, regarding American Indian/Alaska Native National Regional Extension Center Meaningful Use and Provider Sign up. The document gives instructions to keep tuned to their web site for more information. Currently I could not find anything on their site.

Puerto Rico – Ponce School of Medicine
I can find nothing online for this REC except an announcement in their March-April newsletter.

Other previously reviewed areas:

New England
Mid Atlantic
East North Central
West North Central

Next stop, East South Central!