Is the SHIN-NY “Public Utility” HIE Funding a Model for Other HIE?

I first started working with the New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) many years ago when they first organized the Digital Health Conference many years ago. Hopefully they’ll have me back again this year since I’ve really enjoyed our ongoing partnership. Plus, it’s a great way for me to get a deeper look into the New York Health IT landscape.

While NYeC organizes this conference, has an accelerator, and is (is this a was yet?) even a REC, the core of everything they do is around their HIE called the SHIN-NY. Unlike some states who don’t have any HIE or RHIO, New York has 10 regional health information exchanges (formerly and for some people still called RHIOs). The SHIN-NY is the platform which connects all of the state’s RHIOs into one connected health network. Plus, I know they’re working on some other more general initiatives that share and get data from organizations outside of New York as well.

While the SHIN-NY has been worked on and sending data for a number of years, the news just came out that Governor Cuomo included $55 million in state funding for the SHIN-NY HIE. This is a unique funding model and it makes me wonder how many other states will follow their lead. Plus, you have to juxtapose this funding with my own state of Nevada’s decision to stop funding the state HIE that was supported with a lot of federal government funds as well.

In my HIE experience, I’ve found that every state is unique in how they fund and grow their HIE. Much of it often has to do with the cultural norms of the state. For example, New York is use to high state taxes that support a number of government programs. Nevada on the other hand is use to no state tax and government funding largely coming from the hospital and gaming sectors. Plus, this doesn’t even take into account the local healthcare bureaucracies and idiosyncrasies that exist.

What do you think of this type of HIE funding model? Do you wish your state would do something similar? Will we see other states follow New York’s example?

I’m excited to see how NY, NYeC and the SHIN-NY do with this HIE funding. Knowing many of the leaders in that organization, I think they’re going to be a great success and have a real impact for good on healthcare in NY.

About the author

John Lynn

John Lynn

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com, a network of leading Healthcare IT resources. The flagship blog, Healthcare IT Today, contains over 13,000 articles with over half of the articles written by John. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 20 million times.

John manages Healthcare IT Central, the leading career Health IT job board. He also organizes the first of its kind conference and community focused on healthcare marketing, Healthcare and IT Marketing Conference, and a healthcare IT conference, EXPO.health, focused on practical healthcare IT innovation. John is an advisor to multiple healthcare IT companies. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can be found on Twitter: @techguy.

2 Comments

  • On Long Island at this time, I see very little going on in the way of data sharing between hospital systems, practices, etc. Part of the problem is that there are so many practices just starting to go to EHRs, and that many hospitals who had EHRs in part of the ‘building’ are now scrambling to new systems that include the entire hospital and related practices.

    There is another issue; even in practices with EHRs, not all specialties are covered, and many doctors want as little to do with the systems as possible. Today, I had a doctor hand me 2 written prescriptions before I could even remind her that I preferred Eprescribe – but she did honor my request. In the same large practice orders go to a nearby, closely related hospital by phone and fax only, with reports going the same route, even though both have EHRs (at least partially) and doctors in the practice spend a good part of their day at that hospital (one is a department head).

    The hard thing for me is to learn about, and know about advanced communication and data sharing capabilities and see no one in the region even remotely interested. It bothers me both professionally and personally. So I hope that New York’s efforts go beyond providing a funding model and extend to some degree of pressure to hook up to the network of HIE’s and thus take better care of patients.

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