BARRINGTON, Ill. -- GE Healthcare has announced the launch of eHealth, a new business unit offering enhanced connectivity to clinicians and patients designed with data privacy and security features to enable health information sharing that can help increase efficiency, reduce error and improve health outcomes. A part of GE's healthymagination initiative to improve quality
and access while reducing cost, the eHealth business tackles one of healthcare's most pressing problems - fragmented clinical information trapped in disparate IT systems across multiple institutions, without the common framework to connect to other care providers and their patients.
"Connecting healthcare systems is challenging," said Dr. Brandon Savage, chief medical officer of GE Healthcare IT. "Wide variations in clinical terminology, patient identification methods and systems architecture makes integrating health information exceptionally difficult. Turning that information into value for the care provider is a second, even more challenging hurdle, requiring deep understanding of care provider requirements and clinical workflows."
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The eHealth suite of solutions enables the secure sharing of health information that can help lead to improved care by equipping providers with timely patient data, help reduce costs by eliminating redundant procedures, and empowering consumers to make more informed health decisions by providing health histories and wellness services. By providing infrastructure and clinical support services that support physicians, GE is helping to improve the communication of health information,and helping to reduce life-threatening medical errors, twenty percent of which currently occur due to the lack of immediate access to patient health information1.
"eHealth provides the next level of connectivity," said Jim Younkin, IT Program Director, Geisinger Health System and Project Director, Keystone Health Information Exchange (KeyHIE). KeyHIE utilizes GE technologies to serve 31 counties in central and northeastern Pennsylvania. "More than 345,000 patients have registered for our exchange and those patients have given their healthcare providers at eight hospitals and other regional health facilities timely access to relevant information through a secure connection," noted Younkin. "This, in turn, helps ensure these patients receive optimal care."
GE's eHealth business is delivering value to clinicians and patients in four fundamental ways: