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St. Mary's is now 'live' on health information network

Aug. 15, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

HUNTINGTON -- St. Mary's Medical Center is among nine West Virginia hospitals that are now "live" on the West Virginia Health Information Network's Health Information Exchange.

The Health Information Exchange allows participating hospitals to electronically share patient health information with each other in a secure manner for treatment and public health reporting purposes. Providers receive the latest patient health information in near real time in an organized view that is easy to read. Some of the benefits for patients could be a reduction in duplicate tests, improved quality of care due to doctors having a patient's most current medical information and access to critical life-saving information during emergencies, such as allergy information, current medications and blood type.

Other services that can be done through the exchange include sending required information to the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health for public health reporting purposes and accessing advance directives online through the WV e-Directive Registry.

Other hospitals that have joined the query-based exchange include Monongalia General Hospital, Preston Memorial Hospital, Thomas Memorial Hospital, Grafton City Hospital, Wheeling Hospital and WVU Healthcare, including Ruby Memorial, Berkeley Medical Center, Jefferson Medical Center and approximately 100 affiliated clinics and physician practices.

Phil Weikle, WVHIN Chief Operations Officer, said in a news release that, "we are very excited to have these new hospitals join our network; the WVHIN now has partners in many areas of the state.

"In an effort to provide the best healthcare to patients across the state, participation of healthcare organizations in the HIE is crucial so we continue moving forward in connecting providers in all corners of West Virginia."