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National Leaders in Healthcare Transformation Joining Forces to Advance Policy Goals
Portland, ME and Grand Junction, CO (October 17, 2017) – The Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI), a national organization of regional healthcare improvement collaboratives (RHICs), and the Strategic Health Information Exchange Collaborative (SHIEC), a national trade association representing health information exchanges (HIEs), have entered into a formal partnership that will broaden the reach and impact of both organizations. The organizations’ combined footprint covers almost 75 percent of the U.S. population, with operations in 44 states. [The Health Collaborative is a member of both organizations.]
NRHI and SHIEC work to improve patient care and promote population health while reducing the costs of healthcare. They accomplish this by addressing different-yet-related aspects of healthcare.
NRHI represents more than 30 RHICs and state-affiliated partner organizations across the U.S. RHICs are non-profit organizations governed by multi-stakeholder boards that include consumers, healthcare providers, payers, and purchasers of healthcare. They are trusted, neutral conveners that help their local stakeholders identify opportunities for improving the health and healthcare of their communities, and facilitate planning and implementation of strategies to achieve those improvements.
HIEs promote the functioning of RHICs and other types of healthcare organizations by providing the technology foundation for sharing the vast amounts of data that healthcare stakeholders need to share while delivering quality patient care and promoting public health. HIEs provide data-sharing capabilities in their communities, complying with federal, state and regional regulations. SHIEC represents more than 50 statewide, regional, and community health information exchanges (HIEs). The organizations have signed a memorandum of understanding outlining the scope of the partnership, which will initially focus on advancing policies that support regional data sharing; identifying regional partnership opportunities between NRHI and SHIEC members; pursuing opportunities to promote common objectives; and sharing best practices across members of both
Dan Porreca, SHIEC’s board chair, said, “The partnership is a logical fit for SHIEC. Building closer ties with NRHI’s regional healthcare improvement collaboratives makes good sense because it will allow both organizations to bring claims, clinical, and social determinants of health data together faster, which will accelerate change needed to achieve better, less expensive care.”
Each organization brings to the partnership complementary knowledge and expertise critical to transforming the U.S. healthcare system. NRHI members have experience  collecting and reporting on measures of healthcare quality and/or cost, designing initiatives to help healthcare providers improve performance, working directly with employers and other purchasers, and serving as stewards of community-wide data. SHIEC members have trusted data repositories and are experts in connectivity, serving as problem solvers in their communities.
Marc Bennett, NRHI’s board chair and president and CEO of HealthInsight, stated, “As a member of both organizations, I see this partnership as a natural marriage of the core missions of RHICs and HIEs – improving care and providing the underlying data infrastructure to support that work. RHICs and HIEs each perform overlapping and interconnected functions, but by bringing together our strengths, we can each help amplify the work of the other, and deliver greater value by working hand-in-hand within the communities we serve.”
“Lots of entities are working to transform our healthcare system,” said Elizabeth Mitchell, president and CEO of NRHI. “What makes NRHI and SHIEC members unique are their trusted positions in their communities. Their deep local ties and records working for community benefit give them a level of credibility and knowledge that few other organizations can match.”
SHIEC is the national trade association of health information exchanges (HIEs) and strategic business and technology partners. As the unbiased data trustees in their  communities, the 50+ member HIE organizations manage and provide for the secure digital exchange of data by medical, behavioral, and social service providers to improve the health of the communities they serve. Collectively, SHIEC members serve almost 75 percent of the U.S. population. For more information about SHIEC,  contact and follow us on Twitter at @SHIEClive.
About NRHI
NRHI represents more than 30 regional health improvement collaboratives (RHICs) and stateaffiliated partners, all working toward the goals of better health, better care, and lower costs. RHICs provide a neutral, trusted mechanism through which communities can plan, facilitate, and coordinate the activities required for successful transformation of their healthcare systems. RHICs’ deep local and regional knowledge makes them uniquely qualified to help develop innovative solutions to their communities’ particular needs. Follow us on Twitter at @RegHealthImp.
Ivy Eckerman
Spire Communications
(540) 373-2963
Carole Florman
(301) 580-4364