For Immediate Release
December 7, 2012

KDHE Office of Communications, 785-296-0461

KDHE Awards $7.1 M in Performance-Based Grants to Enhance Health Information Technology in Kansas

TOPEKA, Kan.—The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has awarded a total of $7.1 million to Kansas’ two certified Health Information Organizations (HIOs) under a performance-based grant agreement for the provision of health information technology (HIT) services.

The two HIOs are Kansas Health Information Network (KHIN) and the Lewis and Clark Information Exchange (LACIE). They are certified by the Kansas Health Information Exchange (KHIE) Board of Directors, the entity currently responsible for implementing HIT in Kansas. This grant is made possible through federal funding from U.S. Health and Human Services Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), and the funds are administered by KDHE as the designated ONC fiscal manager for the state of Kansas.

HIT makes it possible for health care providers to better manage patient care through secure sharing of health information when necessary. This includes the use of electronic health records (EHRs) instead of paper medical records to maintain people's health information. More than 3,400 individual providers and around 65 hospitals have enrolled with a HIO to share requested information.  

A major component of this performance-based grant facilitates the ability of Kansas health care providers to achieve “meaningful use,” which is a financial incentive to improve patient care through the meaningful use of certified health information technology. This technology also enhances the sharing of public health information such as immunizations and infectious diseases. The funds will be spent by Sept. 30, 2013.

“We have made great progress in our health IT infrastructure. This funding we’ve awarded to KHIN and LACIE will not only enhance the current health IT network but will expand the capabilities of our population health management system,” said KDHE Secretary and State Health Officer Robert Moser, M.D. “Electronic health records improve the protection of patient information and enhance the coordination of care. With EHRs, providers are able to access, more quickly, information that’s needed in the treatment of patients.”

“The Kansas Health Information Network is very pleased to receive this funding, which will allow the Kansas health care provider community to continue to build the information technology infrastructure that improves patient care and patient safety for all Kansans,” said Laura McCrary, KHIN Executive Director.

“LACIE is honored to be selected as a grant awardee and looks forward to using these dollars to enhance services for patients in Kansas,” said Mike Dittemore, Business Developer with LACIE.

Kansas Health Information Network (KHIN) is a health information organization that connects a broad geographic region covering large urban and rural areas in Kansas. KHIN was formed by the Kansas Medical Society, Kansas Hospital Association and a regional HIE located in Wichita. KHIN utilizes ICA’s CareAlign® technology platform to connect healthcare facilities and providers across the entire state of Kansas.

Lewis and Clark Information Exchange (LACIE) is a not-for-profit, provider-led 501 (c) (3) organization and has been actively exchanging information between disparate organizations for almost two years. LACIE utilizes Cerner Corporation as the technology service provider.