RECENT NEWS & VIDEOS

See All

HEALTHeLINK releases 2017 Report to the Community

Report is available at wnyhealthelink.com/2017 BUFFALO, NY – Health information exchange (HIE) continues to have a positive impact on the quality of patient care across the nation, in New York State through the Statewide Health Information Network for New York (SHIN-NY) and in Western New York as demonstrated in HEALTHeLINK’S recently released 2017 Report to the Community. “The value of having a more complete picture of a patient’s clinical history at the point of care for both the provider and the patient is reflected through our annual report to the community and reinforced by results from a survey of Western New York health care consumers we conducted last year,” said Dan Porreca, HEALTHeLINK’s executive director.  “Despite this success, the fact remains that we have more work to do and need more providers to utilize HIE to achieve our goals of enhancing patient care to its fullest potential as well as to mitigate rising health care costs.” A few of the major highlights from HEALTHeLINK’S 2017 Report to the Community include: Reaching and then surpassing one million uniquely consented patients, with approximately 96% authorizing their health information to be shared among treating providers. With a change in New York State policy, participating providers began securely retrieving data for consented minors (patients 10-17 years of age) through HEALTHeLINK. When a cyberattack took down Erie County Medical Center’s network, HEALTHeLINK was an asset in helping ensure clinical operations could continue to run safely by making patients’ data available during the system recovery effort. HEALTHeLINK utilization grew by 50% in WNY emergency departments in 2017 as a result of working with providers and their staff to assist with workflow and provide further education on the benefits of using health information exchange. HEALTHeLINK continues to work with participating practices to support care coordination and care transitions through the two-way exchange of patient information and delivering alert notifications for hospital admissions and discharges. In 2017, alert notifications grew with 558 providers and 390,460 patients subscribed. Health care consumers in Western New York largely believe that access to electronic health records by physicians is good for health care according to the findings of a consumer survey of 1,000 residents conducted by HEALTHeLINK in September 2017. The survey also revealed a high level of awareness of the use of HEALTHeLINK to share electronic health information, and 81% of those surveyed indicated they would encourage their doctor to use HEALTHeLINK. “After just over a decade of collaboration with the region’s hospital systems, health plans and providers, we are more focused than ever on building our offerings to support frequent users of HIE to maximize its value while at the same time continuing our efforts to persuade those who are not utilizing HIE,” added Porreca.  “If HEALTHeLINK is going to work to its fullest potential, then we need the support of the entire Western New York community, especially among those who are not utilizing our HIE capabilities.” To view the 2017 HEALTHeLINK Report to the Community, please visit wnyhealthelink.com/2017. About HEALTHeLINK:  HEALTHeLINK is a collaboration among hospitals, physicians, health plans and other health care providers in the eight counties of western New York State to securely exchange clinical information to improve the quality of care, enhance patient safety and mitigate health care costs. HEALTHeLINK is a Qualified Entity of the Statewide Health Information Network for New York (SHIN-NY), which enables providers to access their patients’ data from across the state. HEALTHeLINK is also a founding member of the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC), the national trade association of health information exchanges. Providers and patients can visit wnyhealthelink.com or @HEALTHeLINK on both Facebook and Twitter for more information.

See All

Viewpoints: HEALTHeLINK deserves community support

By Daniel Porreca and Anthony J. Billittier I As has been well reported, one Sunday morning in April, the entire computer network at Erie County Medical Center was suddenly shut down due to a cybersecurity attack. While the hospital’s IT team immediately worked to bring its system back online, hospital staff quickly switched back to a manual and completely paper-based system to maintain patient care. Although this incident is yet one more example of an ever-growing number of criminal cyberattacks, it revealed a somewhat surprising additional added value from HEALTHeLINK, Western New York’s health information exchange (HIE). Fortunately, ECMC was already a HEALTHeLINK data source prior to the outage and had been uploading its patient care data to HEALTHeLINK for quite some time so other health care organizations could provide even better care of common patients. This forward thinking on ECMC’s part proved to pay dividends. While this cyberattack prevented ECMC staff from accessing its own electronic patient records directly, ECMC’s patient information was still readily available by connecting to HEALTHeLINK. HEALTHeLINK essentially proved to be ECMC’s backup system! Partnering with the hospital’s IT department, HEALTHeLINK staff spent the first 24 hours and the following days enabling secure access to HEALTHeLINK data for care providers and medical staff to ensure patient health information was available to support patient care. Click here to read the full article.

See All

HEALTHeLINK survey finds strong support of sharing and utilization of clinical information exchange

High level of awareness of HEALTHeLINK in Western New York BUFFALO, NY – November 13, 2017 – Health care consumers in Western New York largely believe that the community’s health care system is performing at a high level, is generally safe, and that access to electronic health records by physicians is good for health care. These are just some of the findings of a health care consumer survey of 1,000 residents from across the eight counties of Western New York. The phone survey, commissioned by HEALTHeLINK, carries a 95% confidence level and was completed in September 2017. The survey went on to reveal a high level of awareness of the use of HEALTHeLINK to share electronic health information, and 81% of those surveyed indicated they would encourage their doctor to use HEALTHeLINK. “We are very encouraged by these results as they demonstrate that HEALTHeLINK is working,” said HEALTHeLINK Executive Director Daniel Porreca. “At the same time, it is incumbent upon us to continue our efforts and to deliver value to the region’s health care system. We must also educate the community, including providers and medical staff, about HEALTHeLINK’s value to promote even greater use.” Among the other highlights from the survey: 87% believe the health system is providing a “high” level of care 86% believe that the health care system is “generally safe” 82% believe that electronic access to patient data is “good” for health care 90% of respondents were “aware” that their health care information was being electronically shared Click here to view the summary of the survey results. About HEALTHeLINK:  HEALTHeLINK is a collaboration among hospitals, physicians, health plans and other health care providers in the eight counties of western New York State to securely exchange clinical information to improve the quality of care, enhance patient safety and mitigate health care costs. HEALTHeLINK is a Qualified Entity of the Statewide Health Information Network for New York (SHIN-NY), which enables providers to access their patients’ data from across the state. HEALTHeLINK is also a founding member of the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC), the national trade association of health information exchanges. Providers and patients can visit wnyhealthelink.com or @HEALTHeLINK on both Facebook and Twitter for more information.

See All

A Patient Story

See All