More Than 100 South Denver PCPs Join CORHIO

Date: May 8th, 2013Category: CORHIO e-NewsletterTopics: HIE, Primary Care, CORHIO Network

outh Metro Primary Care to link its providers’ EHRs to the CORHIO HIE network.

South Metro Primary Care (SMPC), one of the largest primary care independent practice associations in the Denver metro area, along with their medical management company Physician Health Partners (PHP), have announced plans to connect the electronic health records systems of its 118 primary care providers to the CORHIO health information exchange (HIE).

In partnership with PHP, SMPC is participating in one of 32 Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) in the U.S., a federal program designed to improve quality and care coordination for Medicare beneficiaries in the Denver area. Connecting to the HIE will allow providers in SMPC’s 26 practice locations to quickly and securely access their patients’ information from hospitals and other provider offices, helping them to provide more proactive and higher quality care.

[Update: in July 2013 PHP left the Pioneer ACO program and instead joined CMS' Medicare Shared Savings Program. Click here for details as reported by Modern Healthcare.]

“We are excited to be at the forefront of connecting health care providers to the HIE system to help improve the care coordination for our patients,” said Gerald Brown, MD, SMPC board president and physician at Internal Medicine Southwest. “Making the investment to connect was a big decision for the board, but we think it’s an important step for our providers and will ultimately benefit our patients.”

EHR Integration Strategy

SMPC will initially focus on connecting their practices utilizing the Amazing Charts and Allscripts EHR platforms. As the pilot progresses, more than 100 primary care physicians in SMPC on various EHR platforms will be connected to the HIE.

HIE Data to Support Patient-care Goals

The data provided through the CORHIO HIE will help the SMPC providers with care coordination initiatives that are imperative to their goals of accountable and patient-centered care. The HIE makes it easier for providers to proactively follow up with their patients after hospital or specialist visits, which helps prevent medical complications and avoidable hospital readmissions. For individuals with chronic conditions, such as heart disease, asthma, or diabetes, well-managed care coordination is essential to avoid unnecessary complications.

“Primary care providers and their patients can benefit greatly from the use of health information exchange technology,” said Larry Wolk, MD, CORHIO CEO. “We are pleased to see that primary care providers, including those with the South Metro Primary Care group, are increasingly discovering value in the time savings and cost savings that CORHIO’s services provide. On top of that, we know that each time a new physician practice connects to the CORHIO HIE network, it means that hundreds—or even thousands—of patients are receiving higher quality, better coordinated health care. That is central to CORHIO’s mission.”

On a state level, there are currently 28 hospitals, 790+ office-based providers, 50 long-term and post-acute care facilities, five behavioral health centers, and two large medical laboratories connected to the CORHIO HIE. CORHIO is also in the process of expanding its network of health care providers and is actively working to connect 12 additional hospitals, more than 900 additional office-based providers, 32 additional long-term and post-acute care providers, two large laboratories, and seven behavioral health centers.