The Indiana Health Information Exchange was launched in 2004 to connect hospitals, pharmacies, laboratories and other health facilities with one another to share patient data, the Indianapolis Star reports.
The goal of the exchange is to prevent duplication, increase efficiency and boost care quality, according to Marc Overhage, a physician who helped found the exchange.
Indiana was a pioneer in health data exchanges, and many view the exchange as one of the best in the country, according to the Star.
"It's been a model for the rest of the country, frankly," Janet Marchibroda, CEO of the eHealth Initiative, said, adding, "The approaches (IHIE) has taken have been shared widely."
IHIE's main service is a clinical messaging program, DOCS4DOCS, developed by the Regenstrief Institute in Indianapolis. The program is used by more than 5,000 physicians at 25 Indiana hospitals, and all of the data are available 24 hours a day.
IHIE also has launched a program, called Quality Health First of Indiana, to increase consistency in health care. The program combines medical and drug claims data from participating health plans with patient prescription drug data and lab and test results from the Indiana Network for Patient Care database to create reports to help physicians treat patients.
The exchange has seen significant growth during the past three years, and Overhage said he hopes IHIE eventually will cover all of Indiana (Bowen, Indianapolis Star, 6/19).