Archived Story

SOMC goes ‘live’ on CliniSync Health Information Exchange

Published 12:00am Sunday, November 4, 2012

PORTSMOUTH — As you drive along the Portsmouth flood wall in Scioto County, beautifully painted scenes from the early settlement days tell the story of this town’s history as a pictorial mural.

The town itself feels like you’re walking back in time into the mid-20th Century with its historic architecture.

But the medical community is fast-forwarding this rural community’s healthcare into the future with an innovative attitude toward the use of electronic health records to improve patient care.

Southern Ohio Medical Center (SOMC) is now electronically transmitting health information and data to area physicians and clinics to assist in the diagnosis and treatment of patients in southern Ohio.

SOMC joins 56 other Ohio hospitals that are connecting to the CliniSync statewide health information exchange, created and managed by the Ohio Health Information Partnership in Hilliard.

Lab results and reports now are flowing securely and efficiently from the hospital in “real time” directly to 27 physician practices and 78 providers in the region.

“We are very pleased that our medical staff has enthusiastically embraced CliniSync, the health information exchange,” says Randy Arnett, CEO and president of SOMC.

“Nearly all of the physicians in our area are actively exchanging electronic referrals and receiving test results from Southern Ohio Medical Center via CliniSync. The speed in which we are able to share clinical information helps us to provide the best possible quality of care for our patients and make a significant difference in the health of our community. It has been a privilege to help lead this effort in southern Ohio,” Arnett says.

SOMC, which serves Scioto County, also has an urgent care facility in Pike County and is building a medical facility in Adams County. In 2012, the medical center placed 10th overall in Modern Healthcare’s 2012 Best Places to Work in Healthcare awards. Among large employers, SOMC placed first. SOMC also enjoys the distinctive honor of being selected as one of just 620 hospitals nationwide as the Joint Commission’s “Top Performers on Key Quality Measures.” SOMC was the only hospital in the Tri-State region to earn the distinction.

Dan Paoletti, CEO of the Ohio Health Information Partnership, says southern Ohio has rapidly progressed through implementation, and physicians in the area are now taking advantage of software they receive at no charge when they join CliniSync.

“We’re extremely pleased to be working with Southern Ohio Medical Center,” Paoletti says. “With the ability to exchange patient results and reports quickly and seamlessly, both doctors and their patients will not have to wait as long as they usually do for their test results. And specialists and physicians can now share health information with one another electronically.”

Physicians who join CliniSync receive software at no charge that allows them to send secure, encrypted emails, to refer patients to one another through an advanced referral management system, and to get results and reports delivered directly to them electronically. A total of 595 physicians in 116 practices, two national labs and many independent facilities have contracted to join CliniSync.

In southern Ohio, 47 practices are on the statewide referrals network or using direct emails to enhance communication among themselves.

Physicians who have the software installed can not only electronically communicate with one another but can fulfill federal requirements to reach what is known as “meaningful use,” allowing them to receive federal Medicare or Medicaid incentive monies for their investment in electronic health records. One of the measures is the electronic exchange of health information outside of their offices.

Additionally, 21 practices have taken advantage of the bridge that links their electronic health record system or practice management system to the referrals application to streamline practice workflows.

In 2013, when many hospitals go live on CliniSync, a physician will be able to search for a patient’s records and bring disparate records to one place so the physician will have medications, test results and history to review before treatment.

For more information on how CliniSync is helping doctors streamline workflow with their local hospitals, read and view how the Community Action Health Clinic and Southern Ohio Medical Center are exchanging information on their prenatal patients.

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