2017 represented another strong year for NC HealthConnex, North Carolina’s Health Information Exchange Authority (HIE). The HIE now has more than 1,200 facilities connected (with over 400 currently in the onboarding process) and consists of approximately 4.25 million unique patient records. In its recent beginning-of-the-year update, the HIE also reported that all participants are now sending all patient data, helping to build an infrastructure to support population health, as well as public health registry initiatives.
NC HealthConnex also announced three key initiatives for 2018. First, it is working to finalize its connection with the US Department of Veterans Affairs and its eHealth Exchange network. Testing is set to begin this month. HealthConnex also announced the formation of a new Participant User Group that will formally launch this spring. Finally, HealthConnex reported that effective June 1st, 2018, the NC Diabetes Specialized Public Health Registry will be available to accept electronic submissions from eligible hospitals, eligible critical access hospitals, and eligible professionals, according to the standards required to meet the definitions of Meaningful Use Stage 3 and Modified Stage 2.
Most importantly, physicians who provide Medicaid or other state-funded health services and have electronic health records (EHR) are required to connect to NC HealthConnex by June 1st, 2018. Practices can request a six-month hardship extension, but you need to act now. For information about obtaining an extension, go to: https://hiea.nc.gov/providers/extension-process.