News | April 06, 2009

GE to Develop Connectivity Platform to Link Physician Offices, Hospitals

April 6, 2009 – At HIMSS 2009, GE Healthcare said today announced it will work with Providence Health & Services (Portland, OR) to develop a new connectivity platform to integrate electronic records from hospitals with GE Healthcare’s Centricity Electronic Medical Record (EMR), a widely used EMR designed for the ambulatory setting.

The solution will leverage GE’s Centricity Health Information Exchange (HIE) Services and standards developed by the Healthcare Information Technology Standards Panel (HITSP) to advance in-patient and outpatient connectivity and interoperability. Providence Health System’s seven Oregon-based hospitals and associated clinics, as well as local clinicians not associated with the health system who are using Centricity EMR, will collect, share and access critical patient information through a standards-based health information exchange.

"Having access to core clinical data is one of the most critical aspects to ensuring quality patient care, but it is also the most difficult information to collect," said Laureen O’Brien, chief information officer at Providence Health & Services. "There is an acute need to significantly improve access to, and sharing of, patient data between inpatient and outpatient settings. We want to help enhance clinical decision making, reduce medical errors and create a true continuum of patient care without interrupting the clinician workflow."

With a planned launch in December 2009, the first release of the project is expected to enable sharing of patient conditions, allergies and up-to-date medication history between hospitals and ambulatory care settings. For example, if a patient presents at a Providence hospital with shortness of breath, pertinent information from the patient's primary care record will be available to the authorized emergency medicine provider at the point of care. A record of the care this patient receives at the hospital – including any new medications prescribed – can then be stored in the Health Information Exchange, making it available to the primary care physician for follow-up.

For more information: www.gehealthcare.com

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