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Alaska DOH Awards State HIE New Contract to Further Interoperability

The contract aims to help the HIE expand services in underserved rural and urban communities across the state.

Alaska’s Department of Health (DOH) has awarded the state’s health information exchange (HIE), healtheConnect Alaska, a new contract to expand its interoperability services.

The HIE has grown significantly recently, doubling its user base from 2021 to 2022. The number of participating organizations also jumped 40 percent in that time.

The new contract aims to allow the HIE to reach more regions where access to quality care has been limited historically, such as underserved rural and urban communities.

“We are proud to be an invaluable resource for so many Alaskan caregivers, and truly see ourselves as trusted representatives of the healthcare community,” Gene Quinn, MD, chair of the healtheConnect board, said in a press release.

“Health information is essential to the high-quality and cost-effective care of Alaska’s patients, and this new contract reaffirms the state of Alaska’s confidence in healtheConnect to provide that critical infrastructure,” Quinn added.

healtheConnect’s goal is to improve health outcomes and reduce total care costs by ensuring that care stakeholders and providers can access timely, accurate data for patient-centered care delivery.

“Having access to healtheConnect has absolutely transformed the way we care for our members. This is an invaluable service to the people of Alaska,” said Mary Swain, executive director and CEO at Camai’i Community Health Center.

“healtheConnect’s digital workflows and care coordination has enabled the modernization of our state’s healthcare system and provides patients with the care and services they need,” Swain continued. “Without it, we’d be lost – still relying on paper medical records and outdated workflows, like fax machines.”

The HIE recently partnered with the Alaska DOH to host the inaugural Annual HIE Summit on January 27, 2023. Presentations and conversations outlined new ways providers used the HIE to improve physical, behavioral, and social health outcomes.

“We are excited to continue our work across the state to bring a better, safer, and more efficient healthcare system to Alaskans,” Quinn said.

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