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Two Georgia Health Information Exchanges Join Forces to Coordinate Care State-Wide


SAVANNAH, GA — Dec. 9, 2014 — The Georgia Regional Academic Community Health Information Exchange (GRAChIE) and The Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council (CCSNPC) announced today a partnership to interconnect their respective health information exchanges (HIEs). The move will benefit more than 1 million patients of the combined provider memberships of GRAChIE and CCSNPC’s ChathamHealthLink HIE,Approximately 1 million patients served by physicians affiliated with GRAChIE and ChathamHealthLink will benefit from secure electronic sharing of patient information.GRACHIE Logo giving more than 2,200 providers within the two networks electronic access to those patients’ health information at the point of clinical care, regardless of location.

“The goal of every HIE is to help providers perform better as stewards of local and regional patient care by lowering costs and improving outcomes, and this partnership greatly extends that advantage throughout the state,” said Chatham County Manager Lee Smith. “With this arrangement, for example, a GRAChIE-affiliated ER team in Macon providing emergency care to a patient from Savannah will have immediate access to that patient’s medical history, and the patient’s primary physician back home will have full details at hand when the patient returns for follow-up. That level of care coordination will eliminate a great deal of unnecessary costs while fostering more informed care provision.”

HIEs are a recent concept that enables all providers involved in a patient’s care — whether in a primary care setting, a specialists’ office or emergency department — to share vital patient information including medications, pre-existing conditions, allergies, immunizations, lab results, appointment history and more from within electronic medical records at the point of care. HIEs minimize manual and often time-consuming information gathering while helping to improve care coordination and reduce adverse events, complications, hospital readmissions and duplicate tests.

“HIEs are at the forefront of leveraging electronic health records to advance population health across a region,” said GRAChIE Executive Director Tara Broxton Cramer. “In joining with CCSNPC, we’re working to extend that reach further throughout Georgia to improve care delivery for the greatest number of Georgians we can reach.”

The Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council, Inc. (CCSNPC) was formed in 2004 by the Chatham County Commission to assist local providers meeting the healthcare needs of uninsured and underinsured Chatham County residents. In 2008, CCSNPC established Chatham Health Link (CHL), Georgia’s first HIE. CHL members include the Curtis V. Cooper Primary Health Care, Inc. and J. C. Lewis Primary Health Care Center, Inc.; Memorial Health University Medical Center and St. Joseph’s/Candler; and St. Joseph’s/Candler’s St. Mary’s Health Center and St. Joseph’s/Candler’s Good Samaritan Clinic. For more information, visit

Georgia Regional Academic Community Health Information Exchange (GRAChIE) is an HIE founded as a 501c3 in 2012 through a joint venture between Central Georgia Health System and Georgia Regents Health System. GRAChIE operates as a separate organization governed by a board of directors. GRAChIE members utilize the HIE’s electronic platform to support care coordination through an efficient and meaningful sharing of health information to promote improved health care quality, affordability and outcomes. Visit for more information.

Media Contact:
Lisa Hayes
Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council