Health Information Exchanges (HIE), HIE Benefits, and Your Choices
You may receive some of your health care from providers other than through Hunterdon Care Center. These other providers may include physicians, advanced practice nurses, hospitals, home health entities, ambulatory surgical centers; emergency medical services providers, group practices, pharmacies, pharmacists, laboratories and others. Hunterdon Care Center understands that securely providing these other healthcare providers with up-to-date information about the health care you received at Hunterdon Care Center provides these other healthcare providers a vehicle for improving the quality and safety of the healthcare that you receive from them. To facilitate the secure electronic sharing of your health care information among your health care providers, Hunterdon Care Center participates in a health information exchange (HIE) which enables the secure electronic sharing of your health information with other HIE participants providing your health care.
What is a Health Information Exchange (HIE)?
An HIE is an electronic network that allows those involved in your health care, such as providers, nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, medical practices, clinics, hospitals, surgery centers, and health insurance companies, to securely access and share your health information electronically. Appropriate and timely sharing of vital patient information can better inform decision making at the point of care and allow health care providers to improve the quality and safety of the health care being provided to you. For example, if you are hospitalized, that hospital will be able to quickly access your medical history during your admission at Hunterdon Care Center without the delay of having to wait for this information to be faxed or mailed. Only individuals and companies involved with providing or paying for your health care are permitted to access your health information. Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE may also participate in other HIEs to expand access to your health information to health care providers participating in an HIE other than Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE. Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE participates in the New Jersey Health Information Network (NJHIN) which, in turn, securely shares your information with all HIEs participating in the NJHIN to provide a statewide system of secure electronic sharing of health information to your health care providers.
What information will be shared with other Health Care Providers through the HIE?
Your protected health information will be provided to the HIE only for use by your other healthcare providers in providing treatment to you. This health information could include reports about your illnesses, injuries, allergies, medicines and test results. The information to be shared also includes health information about you that is more protected under law, such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), sexually transmitted diseases, behavioral and mental health information, genetic diseases or genetic testing and substance use disorder.
What are the benefits of HIE health information sharing?
HIEs enable your up to date health information to be available to your healthcare providers to facilitate making your current or future treatments better. HIEs will also provide your participating health care providers to access complete and timely information about your health care history at Hunterdon Care Center at the time they are providing care to you. The benefits of participating in an HIE include:
- Improves health care coordination
- Provides caregivers with clinical decision support tools for more effective care and treatment
- Improves the quality and safety of care
- Prevents delays in care
- Eliminates redundant or unnecessary testing
- Reduces health care costs
- Makes the overall patient experience better
Your Participation in an HIE is Your Choice
New Jersey law requires your medical information to be automatically made available by Hunterdon Care Center through an HIE unless you choose to opt-out.
How do I opt-out from participating in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE?
If you decide to opt out of participation in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE, Hunterdon Care Center will not share any of your health information through the HIE and your other health care providers will not be able to access your Hunterdon Care Center health information through an HIE. You may opt-out at any time. To do so, please complete Hunterdon Care Center‘s Opt-out form and submit it Hunterdon Care Center as indicated on the form. If you do not have access to a computer and require a printed form, please contact Hunterdon Care Center’s Privacy Officer at 908-788-9292.
How do I opt back into participating in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE?
If you change your mind after you opt-out, you may opt back in at any time by completing Hunterdon Care Center’s Cancellation of Opt-Out Form which can be accessed at our Cancellation of Opt-Out Form Page and submitting this form to Hunterdon Care Center as indicated on the form. If you do not have access to a computer and require a printed form, please contact Hunterdon Care Center’s Privacy Officer at 908-788-9292.
Your Opt-Out of into participating in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE does not prevent your other healthcare providers from sharing your information with their HIEs nor does it prevent Hunterdon Care Center from sharing your health information through other alternate legally permitted methods.
Importantly, your decision to opt-out of participation in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIE(s), will not prevent your other health care providers from sharing your health information with the HIE(s) in which they participate and Hunterdon Care Center from accessing that health information unless and until you also opt-out of participation in your other healthcare provider’s HIE(s). It is also important to understand that choosing not to participate in Hunterdon Care Center’s HIEs does not prohibit Hunterdon Care Center from sharing your information with others involved in your care using alternate methods permitted by law including, but not limited to, phone, fax, mail, secure email or other electronic communications.
If you have any questions about Hunterdon Care Center’s participation in HIEs or your choices, please contact Hunterdon Care Center’s Privacy Officer at 908-788-9292 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.