TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Mar. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire-iReach/ — To mark the start of Health Information Technology Week, the Agency for Health Care Administration (Agency) announced today that over 200 hospitals have now signed up to the Event Notification Service run by the Florida Health Information Exchange (Florida HIE).

The Event Notification Service® (ENS®) allows health plans to receive timely and secure notifications from Florida hospitals regarding the admissions, emergency department visits, and discharges of their members.  Health plans then provide this critical information to the primary care providers and patient care teams of their members. Today, the ENS network, which was piloted in 2013, includes over 200 hospitals and 4 health plans.

“The Event Notification Service is a huge step toward opening up the lines of communication and streamlining the transition of care between hospitals, other treatment facilities and health plans,” said Agency Secretary Elizabeth Dudek.  “The introduction of this service benefits the patient by coordinating care, minimizing visits to the emergency room and shifting the focus to proactive and preventative care. It’s great to see a high level of participation in this service and we look forward to more partners joining by the end of the year.”

“Adventist Health System operates 22 Florida Hospital campuses that participate in the Florida Health Information Exchange (HIE) including the Event Notification Services (ENS). We believe these innovative services are important to improving health outcomes for our patients. Adoption and participation in the Florida HIE by all provider types is a vital part of improving the quality and safety, while lowering costs, of Florida’s health care system.  It is equally important for payers to support the state’s efforts through participation in the ENS service,” said Davidson James, corporate HIE director for Adventist Health System.

The ENS is offered to health plans for a fee-based subscription and includes two Direct Messaging accounts used to securely deliver notifications between participants.  Health plans can begin receiving member notifications as soon as two weeks after their subscription date.  Receiving and tracking these notifications is critical to monitoring the current status of health plan members and reduces readmission rates by scheduling necessary follow-up visits with a primary care physician or specialist.

There are currently half a million members being served through the connections made by two of Florida’s health plans, WellCare and Sunshine State.  Integral and Molina have also subscribed and are preparing to receive data – a connection that has leaders of Florida’s community of health plans excited for the future.

“The Event Notification Service gives Florida health plans the ability to receive valuable, actionable information related to the hospital encounters of their members,” said Audrey Brown, President and CEO of the Florida Association of Health Plans. “This type of real-time data has the potential to significantly enhance patient engagement strategies and improve the health care outcomes of health plan members.”

“WellCare participated in the Event Notifications Service pilot in Florida and we are excited about the impact our partnership with the Florida Health Information Exchange could have on our ability to facilitate better health outcomes for the low-income children and families, seniors, and the blind and disabled that we serve in the state,” said Liz Miller, WellCare of Florida’s COO. “Event Notifications Service data is one way we are strengthening our capacity to support our members in new and meaningful ways.”

“Sunshine Health looks forward to making use of the information made available through ENS to better coordinate care and support our members. The notification service will also better enable health plans, such as ours, in directing patients to the appropriate provider rather than the emergency department,” said Chris Paterson, CEO, Sunshine Health.

The ENS has been developed and implemented by Harris Corporation and subcontractor Audacious Inquiry, LLC, on behalf of the Florida Health Information Exchange.  For more information on this and other Florida HIE programs, please visit www.florida-hie.net.

To celebrate Health Information Technology week, March 23-29, the Agency will be highlighting the services offered by the Florida Health Information Exchange via our Facebook and Twitter social media channels every day this week.

About Harris Corporation

Harris is an international communications and information technology company serving government and commercial markets in more than 125 countries. Headquartered in Melbourne, Florida, the company has approximately $5 billion of annual revenue and about 14,000 employees — including 6,000 engineers and scientists. Harris is dedicated to developing best-in-class assured communications® products, systems, and services. Additional information about Harris Corporation is available at harris.com.

About Audacious Inquiry

Audacious Inquiry (Ai) leverages domain expertise in health information technology and policy to offer bold technology solutions that are leading the way to smarter delivery of healthcare. Ai’s implementation of master data management (MDM) tools to enable health information exchange has set the standard for state HIEs throughout the nation. Audacious Inquiry’s Encounter Notification Service® (ENS®) (Adapted into the Event Notification Service for the Florida HIE), provides reliable, real-time notifications and clinical summaries to primary care providers, payers and other healthcare stakeholders of patient hospitalizations. Since its commercial launch in 2013, ENS has over 10 million hospital encounter notifications distributed securely to HIE organization subscribers across Florida, Utah, Delaware, and Maryland, as well as metro Philadelphia and the District of Columbia. ENS powers FLHIE’s Event Notification Service, DHIN’s Encounter Notification System, UHIN’s cHIE alerts, CRISP’s Encounter Notification System, and HSX’s Encounter Notification Service. For more information visit www.ainq.com and follow on Twitter @A_INQ