Quest Diagnostics Care360™ Becomes First Certified, Commercially Available EHR to Include Direct Project Specifications

Enhancements to Care360™ EHR Provide Physicians with the Ability to Securely Share Patient Information Across Disparate Systems

ORLANDO, Fla., Feb. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- HIMSS 2011 -- At HIMSS 2011 in Orlando, Florida, Quest Diagnostics (NYSE: DGX) announced the availability of the next release of its Care360™ Electronic Health Record (EHR) solution, which is the first certified, commercially available EHR to include the Direct Project specifications established under the coordination of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC).  These specifications will enable physicians to more effectively exchange data with hospitals, patients, payers and other healthcare providers in a secure email format.  

"Through our role leading the development workgroups and pilot projects, we are the only laboratory and EHR solution provider to date to integrate the Direct Project specifications into our product, affirming our commitment to proactively advancing greater HIT adoption among physicians," said Richard A. Mahoney, vice president of healthcare information solutions for Quest Diagnostics and president of its healthcare IT subsidiary MedPlus. "The Direct Project is one of the most significant steps forward in accelerating EHR interoperability by improving the communication among physicians, hospitals, laboratories, health plans, health information exchanges and patients."

The Direct Project is an initiative of the ONC for Health IT to extend the benefits of health information exchange to individual physicians and small practices who have limited resources and technology assets to meet requirements for Meaningful Use of EHRs.  Since the ONC announced the formation of the Direct Project last year, MedPlus has played a significant role in the development of standards through its participation in workgroups and one of the eight pilots.  In the pilot, Care360 EHR is demonstrating early use of the Direct Project specifications and has incorporated those capabilities into its generally-available Care360 EHR solution to improve overall coordination of care and assist with Meaningful Use objectives.

"For my patients, especially those who see multiple physicians, the addition of the Direct Project specifications into Care360 EHR is a tremendous leap forward for exchanging clinical data securely with their other healthcare providers," said Paulo Andre, MD, neurologist at MetroWest Medical Center, and medical director of MetroWest Accountable Healthcare.  "I strongly believe that when you improve communication you improve care, and ultimately empower patients with the information they need to better manage their health."

In addition, Care360 EHR now provides Clinical Decision Support (CDS), which analyzes data from a variety of clinical data sources, providing a comprehensive view of a patient's current medical condition. The CDS engine, embedded with more than 29,000 evidence-based clinical rules -- such as gaps in care, drug safety, lab rules, Meaningful Use, HEDIS, and HCC -- will leverage clinical data from pharmacy claims and lab results, and combine this information with physician-entered data to generate gaps-in-care reports for Care360 users. The CDS engine will also provide data on all 44 clinical quality measures for eligible professionals for Stage 1 Meaningful Use, and provide a path to Stage 2 of Meaningful Use.

Adoption of the Care360 EHR solution continues to grow among small to medium-size physician practices across the nation.  Approximately one third of U.S. physicians—and many of the country's leading hospitals, health plans and regional health exchanges—currently rely on healthcare information solutions developed by MedPlus to document, analyze and monitor diagnostic, prescription and clinical data to provide better patient care. Because Care360 EHR is Web-based, there is no dedicated IT server hardware or infrastructure required, which shortens implementation time and reduces the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).  

Additional Upgrades to Care360 EHR include:

  • The ability to send basic reminders and share clinical histories with patients.
  • The ability to refer and interoperate with care providers on other EHR systems, including support for CCD as the content standard and support for Direct Project specifications for transport standards.
  • An electronic interface to community data sources allowing the physician to receive external documents and patient charts.
  • Support for Meaningful Use quality and utilization measures reporting and submission to allow eligible providers to generate, track and report necessary measures to CMS to qualify for Meaningful Use incentives.  
  • The ability for providers to report to state immunization registries and syndromic surveillance registries.
  • Support for flexible, template-based ways to address state regulations for prescription faxes.
  • The ability to access patient-specific educational resources.

Visit to learn more about the Care360 suite of solutions. To download Care360 Mobile for the iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch, visit the Medical Applications section of the Apple Apps Store. To learn more about the Direct Project, visit

About Quest Diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics is the world's leading provider of diagnostic testing, information and services that patients and doctors need to make better healthcare decisions. The company offers the broadest access to diagnostic testing services through its network of laboratories and patient service centers, and provides interpretive consultation through its extensive medical and scientific staff. Quest Diagnostics is a pioneer in developing innovative diagnostic tests and advanced healthcare information technology solutions that help improve patient care. Additional company information is available at

About MedPlus

MedPlus, based in Cincinnati, Ohio, is the healthcare information technology subsidiary of Quest Diagnostics. MedPlus is a leading developer and integrator of clinical connectivity and healthcare information exchange solutions designed to foster better patient care and improve business performance for health care institutions, physicians and patients.  The company's Care360 platform is a Web-based solution that provides physicians with online laboratory test ordering, ePrescribing, clinical messaging and clinical documentation.  Care360 is used by more than 165,000 enrolled physicians in more than 75,000 locations. In addition, Care360 Data Exchange and ChartMaxx® solutions efficiently and securely collect, store, manage and integrate clinical information within an organization, enterprise, practice or community. Care360 Data Exchange enables clinicians to access patient data in a centralized view aggregated from multiple care sites. ChartMaxx, the company's award-winning DMI and electronic patient record system, has been implemented in more than 140 hospitals and integrated health care delivery networks and has more than 400,000 users. For more information, visit

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