Two greater New York area Regional Health Information Organizations (RHIOs) come together to form one of the single largest RHIOs in the United States.
Healthix, Inc. and the Brooklyn Health Information Exchange (BHIX) announced today their plans to merge into a single Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO). The RHIOs maintain medical records that are continually updated by participating healthcare providers, who can then access the accumulated data with the patient’s consent. With the merger, access to the health records of over 8 million people in New York City and Long Island will be managed by a unified team supporting 50 participating hospitals, 25 nursing homes and many physician practices and other healthcare organizations. The merger will further promote downstate participation in the State Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY). The proposed merger is subject to review and approval by the office of the New York State Attorney General and the Supreme Court of New York County prior to becoming effective.
The merged organization, which will retain the name Healthix, will be governed by a new Board of Directors comprised of individuals with provider, payer and consumer perspectives. Leadership and staff from both RHIOs will continue to support the new organization. Thomas Check will continue to serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of Healthix. Irene Koch, the current BHIX Executive Director, will become Executive Vice President and General Counsel.
“Healthix is excited to bring our organizations together,” said Mr. Check. “Both BHIX and Healthix have built strong technology and services to help downstate providers gain real value from health information exchange.”
“We plan to bring the best that each organization has to offer to benefit providers and patients in the greater New York area,” said Ms. Koch. “It is an exciting time for promoting health information exchange and working through the evolving policy landscape. The BHIX Team is thrilled to have the opportunity to join with Healthix to serve a much larger community.”
The planned merger is a logical step given each RHIO’s desire to most efficiently serve its respective participants. Last year, both BHIX and Healthix entered into arrangements with the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) to operate their technology platforms and to expand the SHIN-NY into a more unified and harmonized health information exchange. The parties expect to engage NYeC in combining the two RHIOs’ platforms into a unified offering. “Meanwhile, as we develop plans to combine our technical platforms, we encourage providers to continue to engage with the RHIO that best meets their current needs,” added Mr. Check.
The work to develop a plan for integrating Healthix and BHIX will occur as NYeC continues to expand its services and provide access to patient-centric health information across the entire State. “The combination of Healthix and BHIX is an exciting development for the SHIN-NY that will allow us to more easily provide access to clinical records for providers, payers and patients in the greater New York area,” said David Whitlinger, Executive Director of NYeC.
“With the merging of these two organizations, we will increase our ability to share clinical data and collaboration across hospital systems, post-acute facilities, and physician practices. This will ultimately create dramatic improvements and efficiencies in the delivery of coordinated care to the patients who need it the most,” said Richard J. Donoghue, Senior Vice President for Strategic Planning and Business Development at NYU Langone Medical Center. Mr. Donoghue currently serves as Chair of the Board of Directors of Healthix and will continue in this role after the merger is effectuated. “The BHIX team is very well-respected in the industry and we are looking forward to combining forces.”
“We see the planned merger as a means of promoting innovative care in the downstate region with a stronger voice, through a larger RHIO, and having the wherewithal to impact the widest possible group of providers and payers,” said Pamela Brier, President and CEO of Maimonides Medical Center. Ms. Brier currently serves as BHIX Board Chair and will become Vice Chair of the newly merged Healthix.
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Healthix Inc. is a Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO) that provides health information exchange services throughout Manhattan, Queens, Long Island, and Staten Island. By providing a platform that connects disparate clinical data systems, Healthix works to help improve outcomes and reduce the cost of health care for provider organizations and health plans throughout greater New York by enabling providers with data for better and faster clinical decision making and improved care coordination. For more information, please visit: www.healthix.org
BHIX is a Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO) devoted to developing, deploying, operating and promoting innovative uses of interoperable health information technology to facilitate patient-centric care in Brooklyn and surrounding areas. BHIX was established in 2007 as a community-driven collaboration between providers and payers interested in improving patient care across healthcare settings. For more information, please visit: www.bhix.org