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How Epic Healthy Planet Promotes Healthcare Interoperability

Orange Care Group and Memorial Health System implement Epic Healthy Planet to promote healthcare interoperability among disparate IT systems.

Epic Healthy Planet promotes healthcare interoperability.

Source: Thinkstock

By Elizabeth O'Dowd

- Orange Care Group’s independent Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and Independent Physician Association announced their plans to adopt Epic’s Healthy Planet program to promote healthcare interoperability.

The collaboration features a technology partnership between Orange and Memorial Healthcare System and will support private practices in South Florida, New York, and New Jersey that are currently participating in Orange’s value-based contracts.

"We are thrilled to work alongside a health system that shares the same commitment to value-based care transformation," Orange Care Group Executive Vice President and COO Frank Exposito said in a statement. "This partnership allows us to leverage Memorial's established expertise, investment, and innovation with Epic's Healthy Planet Connect platform."

Epic Healthy Planet is Epic Systems’ accountable care and population management system module that was created in response to the Affordable Care Act to serve ACOs.

The tool helps organizations keep track of how well they are serving their patients using a variety of features.

Epic Healthy planet includes real-time and predictive analytics, role-based daily metric dashboards, wellness registries, and chronic disease registries. The tool also benchmarks patients against national averages and incorporates home device data collection.

Orange Care Group and Memorial Healthcare System are implementing Epic Healthy Planet to manage patients collectively, as well as independently.

“For patients shared between the two organizations, Healthy Planet will bring disparate health information together to establish more continuous health records,” said Orange Care Group in a statement.

“For those patients unique to Orange Care Group, the organization will be able to independently manage their own patients through a care management platform and predictive analytics, as well as inform the company's internal operations, patient engagement, and provider empowerment strategies across their value-based contracts throughout the states they serve.”

Orange Care Group is also integrating Epic’s EHR, making it available from a single platform. The integration of the EHR and population health system will help organizations identify gaps in patient care management and coordination to promote better care.

The collaboration between Orange Care Group and Memorial aims to create an interoperability framework to share information among a large population.

Many healthcare organizations still struggle with gaps in their health IT infrastructure that stem from a lack of integrated systems, preventing interoperability.

Entities are widely adopting tools into their health IT infrastructures to increase interoperability so clinicians and patients receive the most up-to-date and accurate information possible.

Last week, the Rhode Island Quality Institute (RIQI) and Integra Community Care Network announced their new service, Care Management Alerts and Dashboards. The platform also uses real-time data to communicate across healthcare systems in Rhode Island so clinicians can better treat patients and reduce readmission rates.

Interoperability plays a significant role in value-based care as organizations are looking to implement IT infrastructure technology to cut back costs. Entities search for tools that allow them to see a wide view over their patient’s medical history.

The more information organizations have, the more accurate they will be at correctly diagnosing and treating a patient on the initial visit. Tools with real-time data capabilities also support interoperability and value-based care because they let primary care physicians and specialists instantly communicate patient data.

Healthcare organizations with gaps in their health IT infrastructure struggle with inconsistencies that are often the result of interoperability issues among applications. These applications are also used by different departments that need to share patient data.

Lack of interoperability results in systems that are incapable of exchanging information consistently. These missing capabilities cause inaccuracies in patient data, can put patients at risk, and cost organizations money if a patient has come back for multiple return visits.

Healthcare organizations looking to reduce patient readmission and support value-based care initiatives need to have an interoperability solution in place to ensure that all patient data is shared among the health IT systems that need access to it.