Officials at the Kansas Department of Health and Environment announced today that they plan to distribute $7.1 million to the two networks that provide the infrastructure for the statewide, digital exchange of health information.
The networks — Kansas Health Information Network (KHIN) and Missouri-based Lewis and Clark Information Exchange (LACIE) — are certified to exchange digital patient health records among doctors and hospitals in Kansas.
KDHE will distribute the funds by September 2013 to the networks based on how many providers each signs up to participate in the exchange, with a premium paid for providers in rural areas, according to a plan approved in June by the Kansas Health Information Exchange (KHIE). Federal officials green-lighted the plan last month.
As part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, Kansas received a $9.1 million federal grant administered by KDHE to implement health information exchange in the state.
About $2 million will have been spent through 2013 on the operations of KHIE, the regulatory body charged with ensuring the privacy and security of patient health information on the networks. The rest of the funds must be spent by September.
Originally the money was earmarked to pay directly for the technical infrastructure of the exchange, such as hardware and software needed to connect the Kansas exchange to other state-based and regional exchanges. Much of that infrastructure is being — or will be — built by the networks.
With the deadline to spend the funds looming, KHIE officials determined that much of the money would be forfeited if officials had to wait until that infrastructure was completed.
Coverage of electronic health records in KansasOverview
→ Kansas breaks ground on statewide digital health network (5/28/12)
→ The pros and cons of health information exchange: An interview with Dr. Joe Davison (5/28/12)
→ KanHIT Advisory Council to craft 'secondary data use' policy (2/18/14)
→ Kansas HIE networks connected ‘live’ for first time (12/23/13)
→ Network execs confident they will meet looming deadline (12/16/13)
→ Patient health exchange networks agree to connect (11/12/13)
→ The Kansas insurance marketplace that might have been (10/21/13)
→ Security and privacy of patient data subject of regulatory hearing (9/30/13)
→ Deadline looming for state's patient record exchange (8/26/13)
→ KDHE begins day-to-day duties of HIE regulation (7/19/13)
→ Network execs squabble over issue of exchange connectivity (5/23/13)
→ KU Hospital, Shawnee Mission going live on statewide health record exchange (5/9/13)
→ Governor signs HIE bill transferring regulatory authority from KHIE to KDHE (4/18/13)
→ This is why health IT systems aren't keeping up (3/19/13)
→ Senate panel hears bill to move HIE regulatory authority to KDHE (3/13/13)
→ Bill introduced to transfer regulatory authority from KHIE to KDHE (2/12/13)
→ Legislators request 'lengthy discussion' on HIE developments (1/16/13)
→ KHIE board members get cold feet on legal changes (12/13/12)
→ KHIE defers details of transition to KDHE (10/10/12)
→ KHIE board turns over regulatory duties to state (9/12/12)
→ HIE board delays decision on turning authority, costs over to state (8/8/12)
→ Regulators of health information exchange to consider ceding authority to state (8/6/12)
→ The cost of independent regulation of health information exchange (8/6/12)
→ KHIE board presented with proposal to dissolve the organization by August (7/11/12)
→ Far fewer than projected patients opting out of health information exchange (6/14/12)
→ Public awareness campaign begins for health information network (5/23/12)
→ Networks granted temporary licenses to exchange patient data (4/11/12)
→ KHIE committee changes course on funding scheme (3/26/12)
→ Rural Kansas doc featured as national technology leader (8/17/11)
→ State Medicaid officials announce new schedule for digital health records exchange (7/25/11)
→ Kansas health care providers get first look at exchange implementation (2/4/11)
→ Full coverage of health information technology in Kansas