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Health Information Exchange

2/22/2013

What is Health Information Exchange (HIE)? Health Information Exchange makes it possible for health care providers to better manage patient care through secure use and sharing of health information. It includes the use of electronic health records (EHRs) instead of paper medical records to maintain personal health information.
   
There are two Health Information Organizations approved to operate in Kansas, the Kansas Health Information Exchange (KHIE) and the Lewis and Clark Health Information Exchange (LACIE). Both will provide the technology for health care providers to share information. The Cheyenne County Hospital is a part of the Kansas Health Information Exchange.
   
Your health information currently may exist in many different locations such as the clinic, a specialist that you have seen, the hospital or maybe even Hays Medical Center. When you have treatment done at a specialist’s office, your primary health care provider may not have access to that information. With the health information exchange, that will all change. Health care providers will be able to access your health information if they are providing treatment for you. 

So, for example, if you would have to go to an emergency room out of town, your health information will be available quickly.
   
This allows all providers to make better decisions about your care when they know your full health history, including lab tests, medication history and allergies; this is all information that could be lifesaving in an emergency.

Benefits

  • Increased privacy and security.
  • Reduction of duplicate tests.
  • Information for your care, when and where you need it.
  • Health records available in an emergency.
  • A physician will immediately see your current treatments, medical information, allergies or prior diagnosis.
  • Electronic health records allow for faster, more complete retrieval of patient health information.

While electronic health records (EHRs) make accessing your health history more convenient, your privacy is still a priority. The HIPAA privacy rule requires that health care providers take reasonable steps to protect the privacy of your records and that the information they share be limited to the minimum amount necessary to perform their job.
   
Kansans’ do have the right to “Opt Out” of sharing their health information. However, placing this restriction on health information means that a patient’s health records may not be available for treatment during an emergency. If you choose to “Opt Out” of the information exchange, you will need to obtain the appropriate form (called “Request for Restrictions On Access Form”) from the KHIE website: KHIE.org  It will take several working days for the restriction of your personal health information to be enforced through KHIE. If you change your mind and decide to share your records, you may complete and notarize the “Opt In” form on the KHIE.org website.
   
Having your complete health history in one place, in an emergency or for an annual exam, means better care for you and your family!

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