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Capital Partners in Care – Community Health Information Exchange Launched

Feb 09, 2015


February 5, 2015

Contact:   Anne Sclater, Project Director


Capital Partners in Care – Community Health Information Exchange Launched

Washington, D.C. – The Capital Clinical Integrated Network (CCIN) announced today that its network of primary care providers, hospital and care coordination entities has completed a fully-functioning health information exchange called the Capital Partners in Care – Community Health Information Exchange (CPC-HIE or the Exchange). 

The Exchange connects the electronic health records from five District of Columbia community health centers (Mary’s Center for Maternal & Child Care, Inc., Unity Health Care, Inc., Bread for the City, La Clínica del Pueblo, and So Others Might Eat) and the CCIN care coordination system, as well as the Emergency Care Center, Outpatient Services and Laboratory and Imaging Specialties of Providence Hospital, a member of Ascension Health, the nation’s largest Catholic and non-profit health system. The data exchange is secure and meets all federal requirements for health information privacy. 

The CPC-HIE gives medical providers across the District of Columbia immediate access to information about their patients’ care received at other clinics, allowing them to provide more timely and effective treatment while avoiding expensive duplication of services.

“I think this system has a lot of potential to prevent duplication of services and to give the provider a chance to be more effective at a visit,” said Dr. Randi Abramson, Medical Director at Bread for the City, one of CCIN’s partner clinics. “We can see what the specialist saw, and the specialist also can get medical history right at their fingertips. Currently the system is dependent on papers that float around or the patients remembering what they should be asking for.”

Providers can access the shared information within their clinics’ existing electronic health records systems, rather than using a separate network. This “single sign-on authentication” reduces the need for additional training and makes it easier for clinicians to use the system efficiently.

According to Amy Freeman, Chair of the CCIN Board and CEO of Providence, one of the primary goals of CCIN was to create, through a large coalition of community providers, hospitals and payers a robust health information exchange. “By providing real time clinical data from care sites across the continuum, our doctors and care givers have essential data at their fingertips,” Freeman said. “There is no doubt that patient care is now more coordinated, more timely and less fragmented. This is a critical tool to improve the health of our community and reduce the overall cost of care.” 

In addition to connecting the CCIN partner clinics, the CPC-HIE will be used by a George Washington University project that addresses HIV prevention and testing. Both CCIN and the GWU team are funded by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services “Health Care Innovation Awards.”

The CPC-HIE prioritizes data security, drawing on the experience and lessons learned by other regional HIEs such as the Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP) and the State Designated Exchange, both in Maryland.

Future plans for the Exchange are to broaden the network connection to most District and regional hospitals and medical providers outside the District of Columbia through a partnership with CRISP, as well as specialty medical practices, including mental health service providers, recognizing the important linkage between mental health and primary care.

CCIN contracted with the District of Columbia Primary Care Association to lead a council of the member clinics who govern the CPC-HIE.  The Exchange is also supported by local DC government efforts. “The District of Columbia Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF) is enthusiastic about the launch of the CPC-HIE, as it integrates a cohort of healthcare stakeholders who serve a significant number of Medicaid constituents,” said Wayne Turnage, Director of DHCF. “The functionality of the CPC-HIE represents a major step forward in the District’s health information exchange capacity, and we expect that it will help improve quality of care and health outcomes for District residents.”

The Exchange also aligns with the vision and broad goals of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), which promotes and advocates for the advancement of technology as a means to improve the quality of healthcare in the United States. The ONC works toward expanding the adoption of health IT, advancing secure and interoperable health information, strengthening healthcare delivery, advancing the health and well-being of individuals and communities, and advancing research, scientific knowledge and innovation.

To learn about the CPC-HIE please contact Anne Sclater at asclater@ccin-dc.org or 202-745-3100. 

About Capital Clinical Integrated Network 

CCIN is funded by a three-year, $14.9 million grant from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, awarded in July 2012 and running through June 2015.

More information about CCIN: http://www.ccin-dc.org/

More information about CRISP: http://crisphealth.org/

The contents of this publication are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or any of its agencies.

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