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Collaboration for the Health of Our Community

Our Mission

Our mission is to serve as a resource for broad health system transformation through secure data-informed decision making at the point of care and collaboration with local and state health care providers to improve health outcomes and health care delivery, control costs, and improve health equity in Western New York. 

Our Vision

Our vision is to be recognized as a model functional and sustainable health information exchange that enables measurable improvement in the quality and affordability of health care services where: 

    • Patient data follows each patient throughout the care system over HEALTHeLINK’s interoperable information highway; 
    • Use of this information helps reduce duplication, waste, and inefficiency; 
    • Clinical information exchange facilitates improvement in outcomes, professional collaboration, patient safety, and the public’s health;  
    • Financial incentives are aligned; and 
    • Regional health improvement programs are supported and validated by data. 

Our Core Capabiities

Our Core Capabilities 

The core capabilities that we provide are: 

    • Clinical data exchange based on national standards 
    • Coordination of care using health information exchange 
    • Secure network access at individual level 
    • Record locator service 
    • Source of data for public health and research purposes 
    • Community-based master patient index 
    • Patient consent management 
    • Help desk support 
    • Connectivity to state and national health information networks 
    • Population health community dashboards 

Our History 

HEALTHeLINK is a culmination of nearly two decades of collaboration by leaders of the Western New York health care community and has been recognized for its work in building a regional health information technology infrastructure and for testing innovative approaches by both state and federal agencies. 

Led by the Buffalo Academy of Medicine, a health information exchange project engaged members of the physician community, University at Buffalo, and county and state public health officials to develop a plan to move health care information safely and securely between patients’ health care providers. 

In 2006, HEALTHeLINK, Western New York’s clinical information exchange, was established as the result of unprecedented collaboration and funding from the region’s major hospital systems and health plans including Catholic Health System, Erie County Medical Center, Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York, Independent Health, Kaleida Health, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Univera Healthcare, and with help from New York State HEAL grants.  

Following a pilot phase, HEALTHeLINK officially launched the clinical information exchange to the Western New York health care community on January 21, 2009. 

Within five years of its official launch, all Western New York area hospitals were HEALTHeLINK participants, and the number of patient record lookups had exceeded one million. As a Qualified Entity (QE), HEALTHeLINK is officially connected to the Statewide Health Information Network for New York (SHIN-NY), a technology framework spanning the entire state that allows health care providers efficient access to their patients’ data. 

Today, HEALTHeLINK continues to deliver more and better ways to serve providers and health care organizations in the secure exchange of clinical information. Broader, quicker, and secure access to medical information translates into improved clinical outcomes and efficiency and overall better population health for Western New York.