Helena, Montana –– Big Sky Care Connect (BSCC), Montana's premier health information exchange (HIE), is partnering with DrFirst, a leading healthcare IT pioneer, to provide clinicians throughout Montana access to DrFirst's extensive medication history information system.
Before the anticipated launch of BSCC in late 2020, Montana was just one of two states without a state-designated HIE. An HIE is a modern system for improving patient health by saving time and expediting patient care through sophisticated information technology. BSCC feeds data from healthcare providers across the state into a centralized digital network that serves as a real-time information system for participating providers, patients, and payors in Montana. Healthcare organizations of all types throughout the state can participate in the network.
Through BSCC's partnership with DrFirst, healthcare providers in Montana can search BSCC for a patient they are treating to view a concise and comprehensive health record that will now include thorough medication history information. MedHx by DrFirst provides the broadest source of medication history data available in the industry, which allows faster, more accurate medication reconciliation. A critical patient safety process, medication reconciliation is a National Patient Safety Goal of The Joint Commission. This partnership fills a serious gap in the data compiled from other participating organizations.
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"Montana has over a million residents, and our partnership with DrFirst means that healthcare providers can get the most all-inclusive medication history information for any patient in the state," said Jean Branscum, acting CAO of BSCC. "Having this information will help identify and avoid adverse drug reactions, improve medication adherence, and prevent avoidable readmissions."
Clinicians in Montana who are not already using DrFirst's award-winning MedHx solution for comprehensive medication history will be able to access the BSSC portal to view patients' medication data, including dose and duration. "Knowing what medications patients have been taking is crucial to delivering quality medical care," explained DrFirst's president, G. Cameron Deemer. "Yet patients are not always able to share this information because they may be in pain, unable to communicate or may not remember important details about their current medications."
BSCC has recently finalized contracts from more than 25 healthcare organizations throughout Montana that will use the HIE to create better health outcomes for all Montanans.