After operating for nearly a decade, the Rochester RHIO, a health information exchange serving upstate New York, started migrating to a new platform in late 2014. Much of the migration was done by mid-2015, and the final major piece, the MatchMetrix enterprise master patient index from NextGate, launched in January.

The new platform with next-generation software will support additional services—such as patient matching—that many clinicians previously did not believe that they needed but now do under accountable care, says Ramesh Sridharan, CIO at Rochester RHIO, which connects with more than 200 healthcare organizations across 13 counties.

The migration also brought the benefit of reducing records conflicts. For instance, using the new NextGate EMPI to identify and reconcile duplicate patient records, the RHIO now has 2.7 million records, compared with 3.4 million previously, improving the quality of care, patient management and data association with the patient, he adds. “It’s a lot cleaner view for the user.”

The new HIE platform also includes clinical query software for providers from Mirth and the Rhapsody interface engine from Orion Health.

Now, the platform supports clinical alerts to let physicians know when patients have been admitted to a hospital or discharged, gives clinicians a streamlined episodic view of patients to easily understand what previous care has been given, and broadens support of HL7 CCD and CCA document exchange standards. Rochester RHIO expects in the fourth quarter of 2016 to pilot test HL7’s emerging FHIR interoperability standard, Sridharan says.

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With the addition of new functionalities, the RHIO is looking to double the number of organizations with which it exchanges data. That includes a deeper push into the long-term care market to ease data exchange with other providers.

But the big push, Sridharan says, is to ramp up ambulatory services. the RHIO historically has received small amounts of data from that sector, but now can offer more services, which is expected to bring more practices and their data on board.

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