The Behavioral Health Information Network of Arizona, touted as the first statewide behavioral health information exchange in the nation, has gone live with its first two customers--Jewish Family and Children’s Services and Quality Care Network, both in Phoenix.

The health information exchange combines NextGen Healthcare Information Systems’ ambulatory electronic health records software with HIE platform software from Mirth Corporation, which NextGen parent company Quality Systems acquired in September 2013. Topaz Information Solutions, a NextGen reseller that serves behavioral health and social services organizations, contributed expertise and content. The platform will support all certified EHRs, according to the vendors.

The network, which expects to connect up to 20 more organizations during the next year, operates under an “opt-in” model that requires express patient consent before information is exchanged. Information that presently can be exchanged includes Continuity of Care Documents, laboratory results, dictated reports, discharge summaries and scanned documents. The service also offers real-time alerts for clients in crisis who require immediate services; the alerts can be transmitted directly to an EHR system or via email.

The new service enables medical and behavioral health professionals to have necessary information available at the point of care, says Laura Young, executive director of the Behavioral Health Information Network of Arizona. “This will transform the way we can help patients in times of need,” she adds.

More information is available here.

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