San Diego - CareGroup Healthcare System has gone live at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) with an application that delivers automatic healthcare information updates every 15 minutes to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta. The bio-surveillance system, which feeds the CDC with information key to early identification of disease trends, is built on the CACHE post-relational database. InterSystems Corp., a health care database provider, spotlighted the bio-surveillance implementation at the HIMSS 2006 conference in San Diego, Calif.BIDMC is one of 10 U.S. hospitals that were approached by the CDC to provide medical data on an ongoing, around-the-clock basis. The initiative is part of a mandate by Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Michael Leavitt, who chairs the American Health Information Community (AHIC), a group charged with advising the federal government on standards for electronic health records (EHRs). Bio-surveillance and public health monitoring are among the first focus areas for AHIC and Leavitt has stated that he wants a system for streaming emergency department (ED) data to public health authorities in place by the end of 2006.
InterSystems develops and markets the CACHE post-relational database and the Ensemble universal integration platform. CareGroup is an integrated delivery network that offers a broad spectrum of health services to residents of eastern Massachusetts, in a variety of settings ranging from world-renowned academic health centers and outstanding community hospitals, to physician offices and community health centers.
The bio-surveillance system went live at BIDMC on December 21, 2005. The hospital's CACHE-based Emergency ED Dashboard system feeds the bio-surveillance application, which in turn provides the ED data, as well as hospitalwide statistics, to the CDC every 15 minutes.
Implementation began with installing a secure CDC server in the BIDMC data center. "Information is encrypted based on the rigorous security requirements of the CDC and transmitted over the web. This information is not specific to any individual and no names or patient identification are provided in the data stream," says CareGroup CIO John Halamka.
"We transmit information such as the complaint and diagnosis, location in the geographic area where the patient came from, and number of patients reporting with a specific complaint," he explains. "As more healthcare providers implement these streaming data feeds, information at a local and community level will be gathered countrywide. For the first time, we can analyze disease and trauma trends to spot patterns that can be the early warning of a potential pandemic or bio-terrorism attack."
Source: InterSystems Corp.
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