Sandlot Solutions, MCHC Partner on Health Information Exchange

The partnership could serve as a model for other states and organizations as they seek to adopt HIE initiatives to comply with health-care reform.

Health-care data and analytics and services specialist Sandlot Solutions is teaming up with the Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council (MCHC) to provide health information exchange (HIE) technology and interoperability solutions to the MetroChicago HIE.

The initiative also supports the Chicago area's 89 hospitals and thousands of physicians in providing more coordinated and cost-effective care to their patients.

The MetroChicago HIE is designed to help enable improved clinical collaboration by providing hospitals, physicians and other care providers access to an unprecedented depth and breadth of relevant, targeted patient information at the point of care. MCHC is a membership and service association with more than 170 hospitals and health-care organizations working together since 1935 to improve access to health care and improved delivery of services in the Chicago area.

"We are excited to partner with such a forward-thinking network of hospitals," Richard Helppie, chairman of Sandlot Solutions, said in a statement. "Sandlot's physician-developed IT solutions will dramatically increase the timely flow of clinical information among MCHC's members, enabling them to deliver high-quality care to their patients and improved outcomes."

The partnership could serve as a model for other states and organizations as they seek to adopt HIE initiatives to comply with health-care reform mandates. Sandlot’s configurable technology is designed to streamline data-sharing. Physicians receive digital envelopes within their workflow with actionable patient information and analytics, including prompts at the point of care for appropriate interventions, education and follow-up.

Gathering this quantity of data is part of an effort to drive more patient-centered care, enhanced outcomes, improved efficiency and lower costs for both patients and providers in the Chicago area.

Future plans for the MetroChicago HIE include expansion beyond hospitals to include long-term acute care hospitals, skilled nursing centers and other provider organizations.

"The MetroChicago HIE will have a significant impact on how health care is provided in the Chicago area," Dr. Julio Silva, medical director of the MetroChicago HIE and vice president of clinical systems and chief medical information officer of Rush University Medical Center, said in a statement. "By having secure access to patient information throughout the continuum of care, health care providers can ensure that they are providing the most appropriate, quality care to their patients."

As adoption continues to grow, the goal of the MetroChicago HIE is to connect all of the region's hospitals and serve the 9 million patients in the Chicago area, a company statement said.