R.I. electronic health record advances

August 10, 2007

Rhode Island, which has been in the forefront of the e-prescribing trend, is now aiming to become the first state with a statewide health information exchange system.

Rhode Island, which has been in the forefront of the e-prescribing trend, is now aiming to become the first state with a statewide health information exchange system. The electronic community record, expected to go live next summer, will allow physicians to look up key clinical information on their patients with the patients' permission.

Initially, the exchange will include data from Lifespan (a big regional insurance company), a local reference lab, the Rhode Island Department of Health's lab, and SureScripts, a national company that connects physician offices to pharmacies for e-prescribing. In the long run, the goal is to give providers access to comprehensive lab results and medication histories for their patients.

The information network is being constructed by EDS under a three-year, federally funded $1.7 million dollar contract with the state Department of Health.

Statewide health information exchanges are also in various stages of construction in California, Delaware, Michigan, and other states.

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