HHS awarding $2.5M to HIEs to strengthen infrastructure, support public health agencies

HHS on Aug. 12 announced a new $2.5 million funding opportunity intended to improve electronic health information data exchange among health information exchanges and state and local public health agencies. 

ONC will use $2.5 million in funding from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act to award up to five agreements under the Strengthening the Technical Advancement and Readiness of Public Health Agencies via HIE Program. 

"State and local HIEs play a unique role in their communities by uniting health information from many different sites of service, including providers, hospitals, nursing homes, clinical laboratories, and public health departments, making them a natural fit to deliver innovative, local ‘last mile’ approaches to strengthen our overall public health response,” said Don Rucker, MD, national coordinator for health IT. 

Award recipients will use the funds to improve infrastructure and data services for HIEs so public health agencies can better access, share and use health information to support care of communities that have been disproportionately affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Award recipients will also be required to implement services that support the use of HIE for a diverse group of providers, including those who provide care for vulnerable and at-risk populations. 

Program applications are due Sept. 1, and ONC plans to award the five recipients each up to $500,000.

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