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GaHIN Connects GeorgiaDirect to National DirectTrust Community

Further Expanding Provider Reach, Secure Collaboration and Messaging Capabilities

ATLANTA, Aug. 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Georgia Health Information Network (GaHIN), the statewide health information exchange network that electronically connects Georgia hospitals, physicians and clinicians to safely and securely exchange patient health information, today announced an upgrade to its GeorgiaDirect product to include access to the DirectTrust Community. GeorgiaDirect now connects with a national network of providers and facilities—all members of the DirectTrust Community—that have agreed to adhere to specific policies to ensure the secure exchange of clinical data. This secure messaging system allows providers to easily exchange clinical information about patients who may be traveling, relocating to another area of the country or requiring medical care within Georgia's borders.

GeorgiaDirect users can now communicate with a larger number of healthcare providers state- and nationwide who are also part of the national DirectTrust. This messaging upgrade supports GaHIN's mission of significantly improving healthcare coordination and connectivity in Georgia by enabling providers and provider organizations to securely and electronically communicate about a patient's health in order to provide more comprehensive, coordinated care that supports better patient outcomes.

"We are excited to offer an expanded version of GeorgiaDirect that includes access to the national DirectTrust community," said Dr. Denise Hines, executive director of GaHIN. "This upgrade gives GaHIN members the ability to coordinate patient care on a much grander scale through the secure exchange of a patient's complete health records inter-and intrastate, enabling the treating physician to have the most up-to-date and comprehensive information available to them at the point of care—where it's needed most."

GaHIN's GeorgiaDirect product promotes improved care by facilitating the exchange of patient records with vetted in-network providers—including physician practices, hospitals, clinics, laboratories, and other healthcare facilities nationwide. The system helps to reduce errors and treatment delays, and expedites patient care in emergencies. GeorgiaDirect saves time by eliminating the burden of faxes, phone calls and other isolated communication methods—plus, it adds security to patient data exchange as the patient's privacy is protected by HIPAA laws. In addition, GeorgiaDirect saves money by enabling the transmission of messages with attachments, including continuity of care, transfers, discharges, referrals and lab images, reducing expenses traditionally incurred in transmitting patient information, including costly courier fees. This exchange of electronic records also helps maintain current patient medical files, further reducing unnecessary costs.

Other benefits of GeorgiaDirect include the secure exchange of messages between patients and their physicians, enabling GaHIN members to meet Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements, and allowing for branding of the member's organization through the creation of a customizable gadirect.net domain. GaHIN offers GeorgiaDirect to Georgia's providers at no charge.

GaHIN's technology platform provider for its GeorgiaDirect product is Medicity. "We're pleased to help GaHIN participate in the DirectTrust bundle to provide a broader reach to patient communications with trusted providers across the country," said Rebecca Little, senior vice president at Medicity. "It is a great step forward for interoperability in Georgia's medical community, and assists with meeting Meaningful Use requirements for the transmittal of summary of care documents during transitions of care. Direct messaging is a prime example of an instant network experience to improve the care coordination and collaboration necessary for today's changing health care model."

Since 2009, GaHIN has been leading the nation in technological advances that help improve patient outcomes, which is a key component in transforming the quality of care for, and the health of, Georgians. Currently, GaHIN has connected members consisting of regional HIEs, hospital systems, physician groups and individual practitioners that currently reach counties across the entire state of Georgia.

To find out more about GeorgiaDirect or to become a GaHIN member, visit www.gahin.org for more information.

About Georgia Health Information Network
The Georgia Health Information Network (GaHIN) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the use and exchange of electronic health information to foster a healthier Georgia, improve patient-centered healthcare, increase efficiency and promote the health status of the entire state population. GaHIN's purpose is to close the patient information gap across all care settings by electronically connecting disparate systems and data sources to support improved quality of care, better health outcomes and reductions in cost. www.gahin.org.

About Medicity
Medicity is a leading provider of network-enabled population health, connecting thousands of facilities in more than 100 of the nation's leading private and public health information networks. Medicity powers connected communities that have shared and exchanged more than 2.4 billion clinical transactions to date. The Medicity Network provides the data foundation and integrated workflow solutions to enable today's population health management objectives. Medicity's solutions promote timely clinician engagement, improved transitions of care, reduction in duplicative services and the opportunity for patients to take an active role in their personal health. Medicity, a Healthagen business, is an independent subsidiary of Aetna. For more information, visit www.medicity.com

SOURCE Georgia Health Information Network

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