NC HealthConnex Goes Live with the National Patient Centered Data Home Network; NC Providers Will Now Be Alerted When Patients Present at EDs Out of State

Raleigh

North Carolina health care providers will now be able to receive information when their patients present at certain out of state emergency rooms or inpatient stays thanks to a connection between NC HealthConnex and other participating HIEs across the nation via the Patient Centered Data Home (PCDH) national network.

 

The Patient Centered Data Home (PCDH) is a secure health data exchange initiative of the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC) that can help patients by proactively alerting their health care providers when they have a health event away from home, so their health records can be available wherever and whenever they need them. Based on triggering episode alerts, the system proactively notifies NC HealthConnex that a care event has occurred outside of the patients’ “home” HIE, and confirms the availability and the specific location of the clinical data, enabling participating full providers to initiate additional data exchanges to access real-time information across state and regional lines and the care continuum.

 

For patients, this provides reassurance that they can receive high-quality personalized care regardless of location. For health care providers, PCDH eliminates the potential of a gap in care when a patient is seen outside their normal care area and enables nationwide access to patient information that follows the patient and facilitates better treatment. 

Unlike other national networks such as the eHealth Exchange or CareQuality which require a patient query initiated by the treating provider, PCDH is a push of information based on a patient’s home zip code. See below for How It Works. (Note: The NC HIEA is also a member of the eHealth Exchange national network.}

 

HOW IT WORKS
OUR CURRENT PCDH IMPLEMENTATION COVERS STEPS 1 - 3.  THESE STEPS ARE ALSO KNOWN AS TIER 1.  STEPS IN BOLD ARE A PART OF FUTURE EFFORTS.

1 Away Care Team facility sends Alert to Away HIE of a patient encounter (ADT).

2 Away HIE sends Alert to Home HIE based on ZIP code lookup tables.

3 Home HIE notifies Away HIE if there are patient records. At the same time, the Home HIE sends the Alert to the patient’s usual home doctors.

4 Home HIE and Away HIE exchange clinical data on the patient to improve short and long-term care coordination.

5 Away HIE delivers records to Away Care Team and Home HIE shares post-encounter summary with Home Care Team.

 

PCDH Features

  • Provides a vehicle to close the loop in care when a patient is seen outside their normal care area
  • Enables nationwide access to patient information that follows the patient and facilitates better treatment
  • Links existing communities of trust established by health information exchanges
  • Preserves local governance
  • Protects local stakeholders

So far, over 1 billion total event notifications have been exchanged while working with 45 participating HIEs and serving 177 million patients in PCDH regions. To learn more about PCDH, click here.

 

“Because patients seek care wherever they are when they need it, it is common for a person to be treated by a physician, clinic or hospital that is not their ‘home’ health care provider,” said Christie Burris, HIEA executive director. “As a result, oftentimes the physician treating them will not have access to the patient’s full medical records to support accurate diagnoses and effective treatment plans or the ‘home’ health care provider is not informed of the encounter that occurred elsewhere and does not know to follow up. The PCDH is yet another tool for North Carolina health care providers to have connected communities of care across counties, states, and regions.”

 

NC HealthConnex participants will find PCDH patient alerts in the clinical portal under the “Encounter” page and they are also included in the NC*Notify event notification service.

During the last 60 days, more than 11,000 ADT notifications have been exchanged in NC with 18 HIEs for out of state patient visits (see list below). Nationally, more than 1 billion total event notifications have been exchanged while working with 45 participating HIEs and serving 177 million patients in PCDH regions. 

 

NC HealthConnex has loaded all 45 participating HIEs zip codes into our system to capture out-of-state visits to North Carolina. Current HIEs sending patient alerts to NC HealthConnex include:

The NC HIEA will provide periodic updates as new HIEs are added to the PCDH network.