Michigan HIT Commission Announces Technology Leadership and Innovations Awards

Contact: James McCurtis, Jr. (517) 241-2112
Agency: Community Health

June 1, 2010

The Michigan Health Information Technology (HIT) Commission will honor 13 groups and individuals on Wednesday, June 2 for their work as leaders and innovators in health information technology at the first Michigan HIT Leadership and Innovation Awards.

The reception will take place during the third annual Wiring Michigan for Health Information Exchange conference in Mt. Pleasant. The HIT Commission is an advisory commission to the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) with the charge "to facilitate and promote the design, implementation, operation, and maintenance of an interoperable health care information infrastructure in this state." With this charge in mind, the HIT Commission instituted the 2010 Health Information Technology Leadership and Innovation Awards to acknowledge and promote the use of technology in Michigan's health care system.

"Health information technology has proven to be critical part of improving healthcare quality and decreasing costs," said MDCH Director Janet Olszewski. "Michigan has been honored nationally as a leader in HIT, and I am pleased that the Michigan HIT Commission has honored some very specific examples of Michigan's HIT innovations and leadership."

The goal of the 2010 Health Information Technology Leadership and Innovation Awards is to raise awareness of the use of HIT and Health Information Exchange (HIE) in Michigan. There are two types of awards - The HIT Innovation Award and the HIT Leadership Award. The HIT Innovation award is designed to recognize those professionals, organizations and facilities that are utilizing HIT and HIE in groundbreaking and innovative ways throughout the state. The HIT Leadership Award is designed to recognize organizations, individuals or associations that have facilitated, advocated or supported the advancement of HIT and HIE in Michigan.

"The Michigan HIT Commission is pleased to provide 13 awards to a diverse group of professionals involved in utilizing technology to making improvements to healthcare in Michigan," said Dr. Greg Forzley, M.D., chair of the Michigan HIT Commission. "This year's awardees are outstanding and the HIT Commission is looking forward to continuing these awards next year and further raising awareness of the tremendous efforts to advance HIT and HIE in Michigan."

The awardees for the Michigan HIT Innovation Awards are:

- The Dow Chemical Company Health Services Organization: Located in Midland, MI, the Dow Health Services team is an early adopter of HIT and has shared their global experience with HIT locally and statewide. Dow's technology innovation strategy is unique in that it encompasses the use of HIT to provide care, to empower and engage individuals, and to provide additional layers of health and wellness promotion outside of the Dow environment.

- Family Tree Medical Associates: Located in Hastings, MI, Family Tree Medical Associates has been an enthusiastic leader and innovator in the integration of health information technology and health information exchange in the private physician office setting since 2007.

- Borgess Health System: Located in Kalamazoo, MI, Borgess Health, in its mission to better serve all patients with up-to-date clinical patient information, implemented an Emergency Department Electronic Health Record with a goal of providing improved access to patient clinical information upon presentation in any emergency location and provide quick easy access to ED visit information to the primary care physician.

- IHA: Located in Ann Arbor, MI, IHA has had its EMR for over four years and uses it as a tool that helps the IHA medical staff provide improved and greatly efficient patient care including a secure web access our patients have to their accounts.

The awardees for the Michigan HIT Leadership Awards are:

- Dr. Lou Anna K Simon, President of Michigan State University for supporting and facilitating the adoption of HIT and HIE in Michigan through direct investment in the capital area and ongoing engagement in other areas of the state.

- Southeast Michigan ePrescribing Initiative (SEMI) for driving the adoption and use of ePrescribing technology that has helped lead Michigan to become the third most active ePrescribing state in the entire country.

- Michigan State Medical Society (MSMS) for being the first medical society in the nation to establish a statewide online portal called "MSMS Connect." It was created to provide a flexible and cost-effective way for physicians to integrate health information technology (HIT) into their medical practices.

- Jackie Rosenblatt, the Director for Ambulatory Quality Improvement at MPRO for strategic planning, implementation of projects targeted at integrating and optimizing health information technology to improve preventive health screenings and produce better health outcomes in the outpatient setting.

- Allegiance Health in Jackson, MI for implementing Electronic Health Records, E-prescribing, telemedicine and HIE to improve the quality and safety of patient care in the health system and the entire community.

- Patrick O'Hare, Senior VP and CIO of Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids Michigan, for supporting encouraging, facilitating and advocating for the adoption of HIE and for bringing health care organizations from the entire western side of the state together for the common goal for HIE for improved patient care through the Michigan Health Connect initiative.

- Professional Laboratory Management's (PLM) located in southeast, MI for providing services through the Joint Venture Hospital Laboratories (JVHL) to provide HIT solutions that allow the over 125 independent Michigan hospitals and laboratories work together in the billing of claims and result reporting for over 15 different health plans.

- My1HIE, located in southeast MI, is a health information exchange initiative that provides a web-based product to participating physicians and their office staff called My Workspace, which can be referred to as an "on ramp" to the use and exchange of information.

- Capital Area Regional Health Information Organization (CARHIO) located in Lansing, MI for creating a digital health information strategy and system for a three county area that would promote the secure exchange of clinical patient information across organizational boundaries. More information about the conference and the awards can be found at the HIT Commission web site.