Trade Group Lauds VNA for Electronic Exchange System

Karen Gomes and Peg Doherty receive award.

Karen Gomes and Peg Doherty receive Innovations Award.

Lawrence-based Home Health VNA, formerly of Haverhill, is the recipient of the 2014 Innovations Award from the Visiting Nurse Association of New England (VNANE).  The award is in recognition of the agency’s leadership in the development of the Merrimack Valley Health Information Exchange (MVHIE) Collaborative and the development of a process to electronically exchange information on mutual patients with collaborative members.

MVHIE uses the Massachusetts Health Care Information Exchange known as Mass HIway.  The award was presented to Home Health VNA at the VNANE annual meeting Octo. 8 at Sturbridge Village, Sturbridge.

“This MVHIE project, under the leadership of Peg Doherty vice president of operations for the Home Health Foundation, is at the forefront of healthcare technology and innovation,” said John Albert MBA, FACHE, president and CEO of the Home Health Foundation. “Peg had the vision, commitment and strategic focus to bring the Collaborative together and to develop a process to improve patient care communications using Mass HIway.

The MVHIE Collaborative consists of Home Health VNA, Lawrence General Hospital, Pentucket Medical Associates and Greater Lawrence Family Health Center. According to the agency, the collaborative worked more than a year to implement the security and systems needed for the electronic transmission of patient care information across all collaborative members.  Next steps in this initiative will be to expand implementation and to share meaningful data on shared patients to improve care.

A Health Information Exchange (HIE) is a tool to automate the transfer of health related information and patient data to organizations that have different electronic medical records.   HIE is the next evolution of the healthcare communication exchange systems.  The MVHIE Collaborative is currently the only HIE project in Massachusetts that is successfully organized and led by a VNA.

Home Health VNA, the leader in home health care, is affiliated with Merrimack Valley Hospice and HomeCare, Inc. Together the three agencies serve more than 90 communities throughout the Merrimack Valley, northeastern Massachusetts, and southern New Hampshire. Merrimack Valley Hospice also serves the southern Maine region as York Hospital Hospice in partnership with York Hospital.