Press Releases

VAN WERT COUNTY HOSPITAL GOES ELECTRONIC
10-Jul-2012

MORE WEST CENTRAL OHIO HOSPITALS “LIVE” ON STATEWIDE HEALTH INFORMATION EXCHANGE, CLINISYNC

Columbus – Van Wert County Hospital is the second hospital in the state to "go live" on the new statewide health information exchange, CliniSync.

The Ohio Health Information Partnership announced today that patient information such as lab reports and test results are electronically moving from the hospital to doctors this week.

The CliniSync exchange electronically delivers medical records to physicians and other healthcare providers who treat a patient, allowing information to move quickly and securely to assist in diagnosis and treatment.

Mike Holliday, Vice President of Financial and Administrative Services at Van Wert, says, "Van Wert County Hospital is excited to be a part of this initiative with other regional healthcare providers. The new information exchange will allow us to improve health care through better coordination of care by ensuring that patient information is in the right place at the right time."

A 99-bed hospital established in 1905, Van Wert has a long history of serving the needs of patients and works closely with other facilities for more complex cases, which is why electronic exchange of information will help physicians and clinicians get the right information on a patient when they need it, Holliday says.

St. Rita's Medical Center in Lima jump-started the process in Ohio last December when it went live on the statewide health information exchange after mutual agreement of the leadership of the West Central Ohio Health Information Exchange (WCOHIE), a regional consortium of hospitals and healthcare providers that want to exchange patient health information electronically. Health Partners of Western Ohio, the Orthopaedic Institute of Ohio, Dr. James Bowlus and OB/GYN Specialists of Lima were some of the first to receive results and reports, now reaching a total of 12 different practices and entities.

This summer, Lima Memorial Health System, Joint Township District Memorial Hospital in St. Marys, and Mercer County Community Hospital in Coldwater will connect to the CliniSync network. Hospitals will be sending discrete lab results, pathology and microbiology reports, radiology reports and additional clinical and textual documents, such as histories and physicals as well as discharge summaries.

Dr. Herbert Schumm, Regional Vice President of Medical Affairs at St. Vincent's Medical Center and Chair of WCOHIE, played a major role in the use of HIT within the medical community.

"It is great to have additional members of WCOHIE come online," Dr. Schumm says. "As more physician office systems interface, we are seeing our dream become a reality."
Dan Paoletti, CEO of the Ohio Health Information Partnership, says the entire region will be the first to exchange information with one another, a courageous and progressive step for west central Ohio.

"I look at the West Central Ohio HIE as trailblazers who are transforming health care in our state. Through the collaboration of these hospitals, physicians and other regional healthcare providers, doctors will receive accurate and timely information, allowing patients to receive care more quickly," Paoletti says.

Eventually, as many hospitals join CliniSync, a physician will be able to search for a patient's records and bring disparate records to one place so the physician will have medications, test results and history to review before treatment, Paoletti says.

Lima Memorial will go live after Van Wert. Cheryl Homan, Administrative Director for the Lima Memorial Health System in Information Systems and Biomed, says she looks forward to the reality of exchanging health records both within Ohio as well as across bordering states.

"With many providers in the region implementing an EMR in their practices, the need for an infrastructure to support electronic exchange of patient information among all care providers regardless of location and/or hospital affiliation has become a reality," Homan says.

"CliniSync provides the infrastructure for this electronic exchange within Ohio as well as across state lines, giving the provider quick access to needed individual patient information in one location," she says. "Lima Memorial is looking forward to being able to participate in this electronic exchange to improve patient care in the communities we serve."

Joint Township Memorial Hospital, part of the Grand Lake Health System, will be connected at the same time as Mercer County this summer.

"The CliniSync health information exchange will be a great benefit to the delivery of healthcare services in the Grand Lake Health System's region," says Jeff Vossler, Chief Financial Officer of the Grand Lake Health System in St. Marys. "This central source for patient information improves the coordination of care between physicians, hospitals and other providers. It is a vital step in our ongoing program of a comprehensive medical record for all our patients."

Mercer County Joint Township Community Hospital plans to connect to the health information exchange later this summer.

"Mercer Health is anxiously awaiting to be connected to the CliniSync health information exchange," says George C. Boyles, Vice President of Finance and Chief Financial Officer.

"Utilizing this patient record information database will allow our clinical staff, physicians and patients to interact very efficiently regarding the medical care of each patient being served by the hospital."

A total of 55 hospitals in Ohio have committed to CliniSync through contractual agreements. In addition, 353 physicians, two national labs and various facilities that care for patients have contracted to join.

Paoletti says that in Ohio, there are healthcare providers who started sharing records electronically within the past decade and they have led the way using technology to improve care and outcomes. However, these existing systems are closed networks within a health system or in specific regions. CliniSync is the first infrastructure that will allow information to flow throughout the state.

The CliniSync infrastructure –created by Medicity, a national vendor with experience in HIE in other states – is technologically secure among authorized healthcare users who sign agreements with the Ohio Health Information Partnership.

About the Ohio Health Information Partnership
The Ohio Health Information Partnership is a nonprofit, state-designated entity responsible for establishing regional extension centers to assist physicians and hospitals with information technology and for creating the infrastructure for a health information exchange in the state. Ohio has received $44,146,199 in federal funding including $14,872,199 for the health information exchange (CliniSync), $28.5 million for regional extension centers and $774,000 for critical access hospitals. The State of Ohio contributed $8 million when The Partnership first formed. The Partnership includes the Ohio State Medical Association, Ohio Osteopathic Association, Ohio Hospital Association, BioOhio and the State of Ohio. The partnership is funded through the Office of the National Coordinator, U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services, grant numbers 90RC0012 and 90HT0024. Visit the Ohio Health Information Partnership at www.clinisync.org.

About the Van Wert County Hospital
For more than 100 years, Van Wert Hospital has been delivering superior patient care and advancing new treatments. As an independent nonprofit community health system, Van Wert County Hospital remains committed to the region's healthcare needs for generations to come. Van Wert County Hospital is committed to today, focused on tomorrow. Visit www.vanwerthospital.org for more information.