July 30, 2007
Rhode Island Awards EDS Contract to Create First Statewide Electronic Health Network
The Rhode Island Department of Health has awarded EDS, the state's longtime Medicaid fiscal agent, a three-year contract to design, implement and manage the nation's first statewide network for electronic health records.
After securing a patient's permission, the Rhode Island Health Information Exchange (HIE) will consolidate the health information of state residents in a secure network to provide authorized hospitals, doctors, pharmacists and other health care providers with a more complete patient health file to aid in patient care. The HIE system will be developed with strict adherence to patient consent policies and in conjunction with industry best practices with regard to security and privacy standards.
The contract, valued at $1.7 million, includes four 12-month options and will be managed from EDS' Electronic Health Record Center of Excellence in nearby Warwick. The network is expected to go live in the summer of 2008.
The announcement of the HIE is another significant step toward Gov. Donald Carcieri's goal of electronic access to health information for all Rhode Islanders by 2010 as part of his visionary "Anytime, Anywhere Healthcare" program for state residents.
"With the creation of a statewide Health Information Exchange, doctors will be able to look up their patient's critical health information, giving them a more complete understanding of their patients and allowing them to provide higher quality, safer, more coordinated care," said Rhode Island Director of Health David R. Gifford.
"The Rhode Island Health Information Exchange will leverage technology to create a more accurate and more timely picture of a patient's health situation and enable providers to make better treatment decisions," said Sean Kenny, vice president of EDS Global Health Care.
"EHRs are widely used outside the United States and have been shown to increase patient safety, reduce medical redundancies and substantially cut health care costs," said Barbara Anderson, vice president of EDS State and Local Health and Human Services.
EDS will utilize health care software from InterSystems Corp. of Cambridge, Mass., to build and integrate the system.
EDS has been Rhode Island's Medicaid fiscal agent since 1993. EDS serves as fiscal agent or principal IT provider for Medicaid in 21 states.
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