Press Releases

5,000 PHYSICIANS SIGNED UP FOR EHR
02-Sep-2011

COMMITMENT TO PATIENTS CATAPULTS OHIO AS NATIONAL LEADER
Columbus – Physicians all across the state are going electronic, a technological move that will transform health care in Ohio in ways never before imagined.

Ohio hit 5,000 sign-ups today in the number of primary care physicians who are seeking guidance in selecting electronic health record systems, the Ohio Health Information Partnership announced this morning.

“In less than a year, the healthcare community has come together to move Ohio toward our goal of 80 percent of primary care physicians having electronic health records. This is incredible,” said Fred Richards, the organization’s CIO and COO. “There’s no question that hospitals, medical associations and physicians’ practices have come together as communities within Ohio to help all of us improve patient care through new technologies,” Richards said. Ohio has approximately 10,000 practicing primary care physicians, he said.

Dr. Brian Bachelder, a family practitioner who serves on The Partnership’s board of directors, said physicians are showing a strong commitment to patients when they choose this advanced technology.

“A physician can go from giving good care to great care, just by organizing the patient’s information. The more your doctor knows about you, the better the care provided,” Dr. Bachelder said.

“Now, multiply that by hundreds when we link all of your care together through our statewide health information exchange called CliniSync. More information, giving better care in seconds – now that’s powerful. You sure can’t do that on paper,” he said.

The state’s goal is to sign up 6,000 physicians, a mark set by the Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology (ONC) under the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which provided $43 million in funding for health information technology initiatives in Ohio. The ONC hopes to reach 100,000 signs-ups nationally. As of late August, 87,000 physicians are participating nationwide, and Ohio is the leading state, followed by California at 3,219 and New York at 2,962.

Recent studies show the impact of electronics on a patient’s health and pocketbook. Yesterday, a Cleveland study released by Better Health Greater Cleveland in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that indeed, doctors saw better progress in diabetic patients when they exchanged electronic health records than those who relied on paper records. An analysis released last week from the Wisconsin Health Information Exchange also showed patients paid less for emergency room treatment when hospitals and physicians exchanged electronic health records.

In Ohio, seven regional partners provide regional extension services to prepare physicians’ offices for the switch from paper to electronics, assist them in selecting appropriate vendors, and guide them through a process of reaching “meaningful use” of electronic health records, which can result in financial incentives from Medicare or Medicaid for tracking specific patient information and producing reports. The breakdown in sign-ups is as follows:


Region# of PPCPs w/Sign Up Grant Credit
Case Western University Regional Extension Center 1,102
Central Ohio Health Information Exchange 1,225
Dayton-West Central Ohio Regional Extension Center 594
Northeast Central Ohio Regional Extension Center 733
Northeast Ohio HealthConnect 273
Northwest Ohio Regional Extension Center 635
Ohio University/Appalachian Health Information Exchange 442
TOTAL5,004

The Partnership also has developed an infrastructure for a statewide health information exchange. Called CliniSync, this exchange ultimately will connect hospitals, health systems, physicians and other healthcare professionals involved in a patient’s care. With patients’ permission, the exchange will allow participating organizations to access records through a secure network in virtual time. Last week, the organization announced the commitment of the West Central Ohio Health Information Exchange – a consortium of hospitals and healthcare providers – to join the network and begin building the patient data for the exchange.

The Ohio Hospital Association, Ohio State Medical Association, Ohio Osteopathic Association, BioOhio, Inc., and the State of Ohio founded the nonprofit, and representatives from these and many other prominent healthcare organizations serve on The Partnership’s board and committees.

To watch videos of physicians talking about electronic health records, go to www.clinisync.org.

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For more information, contact
Dottie Howe, Director of Communications
614-664-2605
dhowe@ohiponline.org
www.CliniSync.org