Qsource and State of Tennessee Help Healthcare Providers Securely Share Vital Patient Information

Qsource and State of Tennessee Help Healthcare Providers Securely Share Vital Patient Information

<0> Seigenthaler Public RelationsNicole Cottrill, 615-327-7999 </0>

Qsource and the Tennessee Office of eHealth Initiatives today unveiled next steps in a joint statewide initiative to enhance patient care by helping healthcare providers obtain and share important patient information in faster, more secure ways. As part of the , the partners are introducing Direct Technology for securely exchanging patient data across medical offices, hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies and other care settings.

“With Direct Technology, we’re offering Tennessee healthcare professionals something invaluable: secure access to essential patient information that helps them provide the best care possible,” said Dawn FitzGerald, Chief Executive Officer of Qsource. “We conducted pilot initiatives with Tennessee healthcare providers earlier this year which showed the gains that can be experienced with Direct. We are excited to introduce this highly effective technology and look forward to being a resource for providers as they adopt it in hospitals, medical practices and other patient care settings throughout the state.”

Direct Technology is a simple, email-like service that allows healthcare professionals to send and receive encrypted electronic medical health information. It is being implemented across the United States as part of a national program designed to address the communication barriers between healthcare providers.

Direct was successfully piloted among the healthcare communities in Chattanooga, Memphis and Hickman County this spring and is now being made available across Tennessee to healthcare providers including physicians, nurses, therapists, home health providers, clinical labs and public health departments.

“Direct Technology is an important tool in improving patient care and strengthening the healthcare system across Tennessee,” said George Beckett, HIT Coordinator for the State of Tennessee. “It offers secure alternatives to faxing or emailing patient information and allows seamless collaboration among healthcare providers that was previously not possible. It can be set up very easily in healthcare organizations of all sizes and has proven to be as user-friendly as e-mail for most providers.”

In addition to its ability to improve care coordination by allowing providers or their staffs to securely send and receive patient information, Direct helps healthcare providers meet federal standards for sharing patient health information. It enables healthcare providers to achieve Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements by offering secure electronic data exchange capabilities at transitions of care.

Financial incentives are available to early adopters of Direct Technology.

To educate providers and encourage adoption of Direct Technology, the Health eShare Direct Project will host a in , , , , , Cookeville and the . Hospitals, physician’s practices and other provider groups may also gain access to experts with knowledge of Direct’s role in meeting Meaningful Use standards through a subsidiary of Qsource known as the Tennessee Regional Extension Center for Health Information Technology or tnREC.

More information is available by calling (866) 514-8595 or visiting .

Qsource is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) healthcare quality improvement and information technology consultancy headquartered in Tennessee since 1973. We provide a wide range of expert services to assist organizations and providers in improving healthcare quality and delivery with better patient outcomes and cost savings. Qsource services are offered through our Divisions/Subsidiaries/Affiliates, Tools & Resources, and associates staffing offices in Memphis, Nashville and Knoxville, Tenn., as well as Little Rock, Ark. For more information, please visit .

The mission of the Tennessee Office of eHealth Initiatives (OeHI) is to facilitate improvements in Tennessee’s health care quality, safety, transparency, efficiency, and cost effectiveness through statewide adoption and use of electronic health records (EHR) and health information exchange (HIE). OeHI received grant funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) to support this Direct Project and other projects to implement secure health information exchange. Through these stimulus funds, ARRA enables Tennessee the opportunity to advance the secure exchange of health information and to expand the adoption and Meaningful Use of EHRs and HIE. For more information, please visit .

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