GOVERNOR'S E-HEALTH INITIATIVE WINS NATIONAL RECOGNITION
Council of State Governments Honors AZ Health-e Connection
Governor Janet Napolitano's Arizona Health-e Connection initiative has been honored by the Council of State Governments with its 2007 Innovation Award.
"This is great news. We've shown that Health-e Connection is an effective way to improve the quality and reduce the cost of health care in Arizona," said Governor Napolitano. "Arizona Health-e Connection has become a national model for state governments to develop public-private partnerships that encourage the use of electronic record systems."
Governor Napolitano created the Arizona Health-e Connection Steering Committee by executive order in August 2005. Arizona's Chief Information Officer, Chris Cummiskey, and Beth Schermer, a health care attorney, served as its co-chairs.
In April 2006, the Steering Committee delivered a statewide roadmap for e-health to the Governor. This roadmap outlined a process for the health care industry in Arizona to keep, update and transfer health records electronically to other medical professionals in a safe and secure form - speeding up the process while saving money. Last March, the Arizona Health-e Connection evolved from a state run steering committee to a private, nonprofit organization charged with implementing Health Information Exchange and the deployment of Health Information Technology in Arizona.
The Council of State Governments established the Innovations Awards Program in 1986 to bring greater visibility to exemplary state programs and practices, and to facilitate the transfer of those successful experiences to other states. The program is the only comprehensive national awards program that focuses exclusively on state programs and policies.
Arizona Health-e Connection will officially receive the award November 11 at the Council's Annual State Trends and Leadership Forum in Oklahoma City.