In response to yesterday’s press release by Hixny, a New York State Qualified Entity (QE) based in the Adirondacks, Staci Romeo, Executive Director of HealthlinkNY, came out strongly today against Hixny’s planned expansion into HealthlinkNY’s service area in the Hudson Valley, Catskills, and Southern Tier of New York State.
“The truth is that an unnecessary expansion into this service area compromises the effectiveness of the Health Information Exchange [HIE],” said Romeo. “Hixny’s claims against HealthlinkNY’s impact and progress are completely unfounded and sound like a case of sour grapes after being passed over during our search for a strategic partner.” Romeo was referring to the fact that HealthlinkNY already has all 35 hospitals in the Hudson Valley and Catskill region participating and sending data to their HIE, as well as 1,207 sites; Hixny has 21 sites and no hospitals.
HealthlinkNY, which recently hit the two million patient consent mark and has 374 participating provider organizations, up from 271 at the end of 2017, has entered into strategic partnership discussions with HealtheConnections, another QE. HealthlinkNY had recently advised Hixny that they did not make the cut.
While Romeo did not offer specifics, she did say that HealthlinkNY entered into discussions with HealtheConnections because “they are in alignment with us with respect to mission, best practices, services, capabilities, and culture. They also will help power a more sophisticated technology platform as well as a complementary program for population health, critical with today’s burgeoning opioid crisis and the need for increased access to mental health services. We want to take this to the next level.” HealthlinkNY covers a region of New York State with significant population, geographic and cultural density. HealthlinkNY has been, and continues to, focus on growth in this region. She said that the future partnership will bring great value to both QEs’ participants.
The HealthlinkNY service region and practices connected to the Binghamton-based QE.
HealthlinkNY has significant plans underway in the Hudson Valley and Catskill regions to increase its presence and breadth of services offered. All of the hospitals in the region are already successfully contributing data to HealthlinkNY. “We are the only QE in the region with data immediately available for healthcare providers. While others seek to confuse the marketplace for their own professional gain, our focus is pure: to help providers improve the continuum of care,” notes Romeo.
HealthlinkNY presently covers 13 counties in the Hudson Valley, Catskills, and Southern Tier, including some of the most populated areas of New York State. HealthlinkNY also administers two Population Health Improvement Programs (PHIPs) in the Hudson Valley and Southern Tier. HealthlinkNY’s service area population is just shy of 2.9 million residents—14.5% of New York’s population—and boasts nearly 1,800 participating locations.
“HealthlinkNY is booming and is the second largest QE by population in New York State,” Romeo said. “The quality of our data has been ranked second of all New York State QEs, and far exceeds Hixny’s. HealthlinkNY is strong, growing, and has enormous momentum.”