GE Healthcare and Butler Health System, which serves Western Pennsylvania communities, have announced the planned implementation of a health information exchange to enable clinical information access between BHS and its affiliated and independent physicians, as well as referral hospitals outside of the immediate community.
“We’ve partnered with GE to create an extensible health information exchange (HIE) that we will use to better communicate and coordinate care with physicians across our community” said Chuck Oleson, Chief Information Officer of Butler Health System. “We chose GE’s solution because it has a robust infrastructure to meet our immediate requirements and is standards-based, allowing us to connect to other HIEs as they develop over time.”
Butler Health System (BHS) is a not-for-profit hospital serving over 120,000 patients annually and has more than a dozen outpatient locations throughout Butler County. BHS will implement GE Healthcare’s bi-directional HIE to enable the seamless exchange of information including: continuity of care documents (CCDs); clinical summary documents; surgical and practice notes; lab, radiology and cardiology orders and results; and referrals. Oleson explained, “Creating bi-directional data exchange will give doctors access to comprehensive patient data, helping them provide the best possible care.”
Butler’s HIE will provide data to GE Healthcare’s ambulatory electronic medical record (EMR) - Centricity® EMR - as well as non-GE clinical software products. GE will integrate HIE data seamlessly with these existing systems, enabling physicians to view newly-available clinical patient information from various sources within their native EMR screens, thereby potentially increasing physician adoption of the HIE by eliminating the need for new sign-on credentials and new screens to learn.
In addition, Butler Health System is recommending Software-as-a-Service (SAAS) based ambulatory EMR’s, such as GE Centricity Advance, to help drive EMR adoption by small independent physician practices in the surrounding communities. The HIE’s referrals management capability from GE will enable doctors who adopt the SAAS-based EMR to electronically and automatically place referrals with physicians who currently use Centricity EMR or select non-GE products rather than rely on fax or mail.
Phase 2 centers around BHS connecting to larger HIE networks, enabling participation in a vast array of clinical information. With this initial HIE integration in place, BHS can automate access to information supporting the clinical care of its patients at other facilities. The Butler HIE will use an IHE XCA connection to support this information sharing, providing uninterrupted patient care from facility to facility, regardless of distance between the facilities.
Earl Jones, Vice President and General Manager of GE Healthcare’s eHealth Solutions, added “Organizations like Butler Health System are leading the way, taking steps to meet meaningful use now and position themselves proactively for the rapid changes that are coming, including accountable care. The HIE will allow BHS to create near-term cost efficiencies though tighter integration with the referring physicians and long-term advantages in terms of managing chronic diseases and monitoring public health.”
About GE Healthcare
GE Healthcare (gehealthcare.com) provides transformational medical technologies and services that are shaping a new age of patient care. Our broad expertise in medical imaging and information technologies, medical diagnostics, patient monitoring systems, drug discovery, biopharmaceutical manufacturing technologies, performance improvement and performance solutions services help our customers to deliver better care to more people around the world at a lower cost. In addition, we partner with healthcare leaders, striving to leverage the global policy change necessary to implement a successful shift to sustainable healthcare systems.
Our “healthymagination” vision for the future invites the world to join us on our journey as we continuously develop innovations focused on reducing costs, increasing access and improving quality around the world. Headquartered in the United Kingdom, GE Healthcare is a unit of General Electric Company. Worldwide, GE Healthcare employees are committed to serving healthcare professionals and their patients in more than 100 countries.
About Butler Health System
Butler Health System (BHS) is a community health system that provides healthcare services in locations throughout Western Pennsylvania. We are a network of doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals, personally invested in the community, who are focused on providing individualized care for every patient we treat. At BHS (butlerhealthsystem.org), we are neighbors taking care of neighbors for the benefit of the whole community.