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Dueling HIEs thwart patient care

InformationWeek, October 11, 2012

Competition among Michigan's regional health information exchanges has hampered the development of a statewide HIE. In 2006, then Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm adopted a plan to encourage the growth of "sub-state" HIEs, of which there are now six in Michigan. It was expected that these exchanges would have interconnected through a statewide HIE by this year. Instead, the two largest HIEs are each trying to win enough market share to become statewide exchanges themselves. The biggest problem this presents to Michigan healthcare providers is that the two big HIEs—Great Lakes HIE and Grand Rapids-based Michigan Health Connect—use different HIE vendors and are on different platforms. So if a hospital or physician practice signs up with one of these HIEs, they can't exchange data with providers that belong to the other exchange.