NC HIEA September 2022 Update

Health care providers in North Carolina can get personalized guidance on how to connect to NC HealthConnex, the state-designated health information exchange, and learn how to get the most out of it for their practices thanks to N.C. Area Health Education Centers (AHEC) coaches.

During Hurricane, Providers Can Access Health Records for Displaced Patients via NC HealthConnex

As Hurricane Ian is set to make landfall on the Florida coast, health care providers participating in NC HealthConnex, North Carolina’s state-designated health information exchange, can connect to neighboring state and regional HIEs to support access to patient records in the event that displaced patients seek care in facilities from neighboring states.

NC HealthConnex supports bidirectional query and exchange of patient records with participation in the national eHealth Exchange Network. NC HealthConnex participants can use the clinical portal to query, view and exchange patient records, and access other features. Neighboring connections via the eHealth Exchange include:

  • East Tennessee Health Information Network (etHIN)

  • Florida HIE

  • Georgia Health Information Network (GaHIN)

  • Georgia Regional Academic Community Health Information Exchange (GRAChIE)

  • MedVirginia

  • Veterans Health Information Exchange (VHIE), U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Department of Defense joint health information exchange

NC HealthConnex also enables the exchange of patient data with networks in 25 states through participation in the Patient Centered Data Home (PCDH)™ national network. This secure health data exchange initiative managed by Civitas Networks for Health notifies North Carolina providers when their patients receive out-of-state care.

Providers who do not currently have a full participation agreement with NC HealthConnex that allows access to the clinical portal can use the Emergency Access Participation Agreement to access the clinical portal during times of emergency. Email the completed pdf document to hiea@nc.gov. Our NC HealthConnex Participation Agreement page provides more information and FAQs about participation agreements.

To access these connections, members of your clinical team will need clinical portal credentials to look up patient health information. Please follow the instructions (Participant Account Administrator Reference Guide) to proactively request these credentials. If you have questions, contact the NC HealthConnex SAS Support Desk at HIESupport@sas.com or 919-531-2700. 

For any questions, please can reach the NC HealthConnex staff at hiea@nc.gov or 919-754-6912.

NC HealthConnex Participants Encouraged to Attend 2022 N.C. Cybersecurity Awareness Symposium

The N.C. Department of Information Technology, which houses the N.C. Health Information Exchange Authority, is presenting a free, two-day virtual symposium on cybersecurity.

The N.C. Cybersecurity Awareness Symposium, on Oct. 4-5, will feature cyber leaders and subject matter experts in the private, public, and academic sectors. Health care organizations and providers can learn how to protect themselves from ever-evolving cyber threats.

Register for the free symposium.

Choose from more than 20 online sessions and workshops presented by NCDIT and partners:

  • N.C. Joint Cybersecurity Task Force
  • N.C. Emergency Management
  • N.C. National Guard
  • U.S. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency
  • Amazon Web Services
  • BitSight
  • CrowdStrike
  • Info-Tech Research Group
  • KnowBe4
  • Microsoft
  • Splunk
  • StateRAMP
  • Tanium
  • Tenable
  • UNC-Wilmington
  • VMware

Read more cybersecurity news and tips in the N.C. Department of Information Technology's Enterprise Security and Risk Management Office's September Cybersecurity newsletter.

NC HIEA Offers Resources to Understand Legislative Mandate, Changes

The mandate for health care organizations and providers that serve state-funded patients on January 1, 2023, is fast approaching. The legislative changes enacted in the 2022 Appropriations Act may leave organizations and providers with questions about their connection status. 

The N.C. Health Information Exchange Authority is offering several resources to help organizations and providers understand these changes and their impacts.

You can find answers to questions on these and other topics on our FAQs page.

The NC HIEA is ready to assist providers with understanding how these legislative changes affect them. Please contact us at hiea@nc.gov or 919-754-6912.

Upcoming Events

  • Quarterly User Audit – Friday, Sept. 30 – Contacted organizations should complete user account audits within their participant account administrator portal by this date. For detailed information, see the Quarterly Audit Quick Reference Guide.

  • NC HIEA Advisory Board Meeting – Thursday, October 13, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. – The Advisory Board meets to discuss developments related to NC HealthConnex and the NC HIEA. Learn more.

  • How to Connect Call – Monday, Oct. 31, 2022, 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. – Learn more about steps to connect to NC HealthConnex and the suite of value-added services available. Register for the call

In the News

Health Care Half Hour – The Healthy Opportunities Pilot – A new Medicaid program allows community service organizations to work with Medicaid recipients to mitigate health risks before they become problems. northcarolinahealthnews.org 

Mental Health Policy Continues to Evolve – The 988 suicide prevention line launched in mid-July, and more changes to how the federal government handles mental health care are likely ahead. politico.com 

HHS Releases HHS Roadmap for Behavioral Health Integration – The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released the Roadmap for Behavioral Health Integration to provide policy solutions to better integrate mental health and substance use care into the healthcare system hcinnovationgroup.com

How Cybersecurity Vulnerability Disclosures Help the Healthcare Community – Cybersecurity vulnerability disclosures are essential to spreading awareness, increasing transparency, and encouraging collaboration in the healthcare community. healthitsecurity.com

Regenstrief Secures CDC Grant for Long COVID-19 Research Using HIE Data – Researchers from the Regenstrief Institute and Indiana University will leverage data from the Indiana Network for Patient Care (INPC) HIE to develop a comprehensive, population-based surveillance system for long COVID-19. ehrintelligence.com

Using FHIR Hubs to Drive Social Service, Health Data Interoperability – The St. Louis Regional Data Alliance created a FHIR-based interoperability hub for aging services data to anchor its efforts to bridge social service and health information. ehrintelligence.com

California's Work Toward Statewide Health Data Exchange – A new law in the Golden State requires providers, payers and public health agencies to participate in real-time information sharing by 2024. healthcareitnews.com