For Immediate Release
February 12, 2010

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

Kansas Receives Recovery Act Funding For Health Information Exchange

In a news release today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it had awarded over $9 million in Recovery Act funding to the Kansas Health Information Exchange Project to help facilitate health information exchange (HIE) at the state level.  The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is the state designee for health information technology and is facilitating the creation of strategic and operational plans for a statewide infrastructure for HIE.  The new federal funding will be used to further those efforts.

“This announcement is great news for Kansas as it will bring countless opportunities in terms of creating jobs, advancing technology and reducing our overall health care costs,” said Governor Mark Parkinson.

The primary goal of health information exchange is to allow healthcare providers and stakeholders to share data for coordinating patient care and to support public entities in understanding and improving health goals for the entire population. The funding from HHS will help to help achieve the national goal of every American having an electronic health record by 2014.

“Through health information exchange Kansans will experience a greater quality of care, delivered more efficiently,” Roderick Bremby, Secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, said. “This funding is a good investment that will positively affect the way health care is provided and will support health care providers as they implement this powerful technology.”

To guide the planning and implementation process, KDHE has convened an expanded e-Health Advisory Council, which is a broad base of health care stakeholders representing more than 30 health care organizations that are guiding the planning and implementation process of health information exchange in Kansas. This group is divided into workgroups, which are looking at five areas of the project: governance, technology, business operations, finance and legal.

The next e-Health Advisory Council meeting will be held March 10.

To learn more about statewide HIE planning visit the Kansas Health Information Technology Initiative (KanHIT) website at: http://www.kanhit.org/.