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CIGNA Invests $150k In Tennessee EMR Initiative

The Middle Tennessee eHealth Connect initiative is aimed at allowing health care professionals in its health information network access to patient electronic medical records (EMRs) in one safe, secure location.

CIGNA has contributed $150,000 to the Middle Tennessee eHealth Connect (MTeHC) toward the organization's work to develop a regional health information organization intended to exchanging electronic medical records (EMRs) to help improve healthcare quality and reduce costs, according to a CIGNA news release. The donation is expected to forward MTeHC's longer-term goal of creating a state-wide health information exchange (HIE).

"CIGNA's $150,000 contribution is an investment for improving the health and reducing health care costs of Tennesseans," comments John Sorrow, president of CIGNA HealthCare of Tennessee. "We at CIGNA are proud that Tennessee is a national leader in electronic health information exchange and that we are able to help our state create a network of electronic medical records so that physicians can better coordinate care, avoid redundancies and strengthen the care provided to individuals across the state."

MTeHC will allow health care professionals in its health information network access to patient medical records in one safe, secure location, the CIGNA release asserts.

Tennessee's Office of e-Health Initiatives was created in 2006 as the state's coordinating authority for the exchange of electronic health information, and works with other regional health organizations, such as the Mid-South e-Health Alliance in Memphis and CareSpark in Kingsport, to increase the adoption of health information technology.

"Tennessee continues to show national leadership in the secure exchange of health information to benefit patients," says Commissioner Dave Goetz, Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration. "MTeHC, through the support of CIGNA's grant, will be a model in Middle Tennessee for clinicians and hospitals having access to decision-ready health information at the point of care, and therefore will help drive improvements in health care outcomes."

Millions of dollars are spent each year in Middle Tennessee because of lack of access to patient records at other facilities, claims Larry Kloess, chairman of the MTeHC Board. "We are grateful that CIGNA is dedicated to improving the health of those living in Tennessee," Kloess remarks. "With this donation to the MTeHC, we can take the next steps toward achieving our goals to create a state-wide health information exchange [HIE]."

Anthony O'Donnell has covered technology in the insurance industry since 2000, when he joined the editorial staff of Insurance & Technology. As an editor and reporter for I&T and the InformationWeek Financial Services of TechWeb he has written on all areas of information ... View Full Bio

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