Michi­gan’s largest data ex­changes com­bine op­er­a­tions

Modern Healthcare - - REGIONAL NEWS - —Joseph Conn

Michi­gan’s two largest health in­for­ma­tion ex­change or­ga­ni­za­tions, Michi­gan Health Con­nect, Grand Rapids, and Great Lakes Health In­for­ma­tion Ex­change, East Lans­ing, have com­pleted plans an­nounced in Jan­uary to merge, form­ing Great Lakes Health Con­nect.

The com­bined or­ga­ni­za­tions, both launched in 2009, cover more than 80% of the hospi­tal beds in the state and more than 20,000 providers, serv­ing more than 5 mil­lion people. The two had en­tered into a data ex­change agree­ment in the fall of 2013.

“Michi­gan Health Con­nect and the Great Lakes Health In­for­ma­tion Ex­change rec­og­nized that our mis­sions were es­sen­tially the same and that we could bet­ter achieve our vi­sion for a health­ier Michi­gan to­gether, rather than in­de­pen­dently,” Dr. Brian McCardel, chair­man of the Great Lakes Health In­for­ma­tion Ex­change board of di­rec­tors, said in a news re­lease.

The move comes as $548 mil­lion in federal grants to es­tab­lish state- and ter­ri­tory-based health in­for­ma­tion ex­change or­ga­ni­za­tions un­der the Amer­i­can Re­cov­ery and Rein­vest­ment Act of 2009 is run­ning out.

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