SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) — East Lansing-based Great Lakes Health Information Exchange and Southfield-based Michigan Health Connect, the state’s two largest providers of health information exchange, have agreed to share medical records electronically.

The collaboration means that medical professionals treating about half the people in Michigan will have immediate access to vital medical information via a secure electronic network. More than 3,000 provider offices and 96 hospitals are involved.

“This is an important advancement for healthcare in Michigan,” said Doug Dietzman, executive director of Michigan Health Connect. “It means that most of the clinical information exchanged electronically throughout Michigan will be handled by this new, expanded network. Such coordination is vital to improving healthcare in this state and beyond.”

Electronic health information exchange is being implemented across the country to ensure that physicians, hospitals and other medical professionals have access to a patient’s complete medical record — no matter where that patient seeks treatment. It provides better care for patients and cost-saving efficiencies for providers.

Benefiting are patients and physicians in places like Ann Arbor, where the University of Michigan Medical Center was served by the Great Lakes Health Information Exchange and St. Joseph Mercy Hospital was served by Michigan Health Connect, said Carol Parker, executive director of the Great Lakes Health Information Exchange.

“Now both hospitals, serving the same community, can exchange clinical information with no technological barriers,” Parker said. “Being part of this agreement is important because it’s the logical next step to providing optimal patient care.”

Michigan Health Connect is the largest provider of health information exchange in Michigan, serving 82 hospitals, over 400 medical offices, more than 17,000 individual providers and diverse providers statewide including Federally Qualified Health Clinics, Community Mental Health and long-term care facilities. More at .

The Great Lakes Health Information Exchange has more than more than 3 million individuals in its master patient index, More at .


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