Health Information Exchange, or HIE, is a way of sharing electronic health information among doctors’ offices, hospitals, labs, radiology centers, and other health organizations. HIE allows access of the right health information to the right health care personnel at the right time, providing safer, more timely, efficient, patient-centered care. HIE will allow the doctors and nurses treating you in a hospital or doctor’s office to access your medical history. For example, doctors can review recent lab results whether the test was conducted at your primary care provider, at the hospital, or at participating labs across the State.
If health information is written only on paper records and HIE is not used, when doctors need to share health information about a patient, the process is time-consuming, may take multiple staff at both ends, involving phone calls, frequent mailings, and faxes. Gathering health information on a patient can take hours or even weeks sometimes the information may not be available at all, and errors are commonly made. Through the HIE, doctors will have immediate access to important information. Because all authorized doctors and medical personnel will see the same health information through the HIE, this will help to reduce any errors, avoid unneeded duplication of tests and procedures, and consequently, could reduce medical bills.