MEDICAL MOMENT: QUALITY HEALTH NETWORK?

Telluride Inside… and Out is proud to feature the Telluride Medical Center’s MEDICAL MOMENT, a weekly column that answers common medical questions in pop culture. Have a question for the doctors? Click here to send.

 

Dr. Sharon Grundy

Dr. Sharon Grundy

Dr. Sharon Grundy answers this week’s question: What is Quality Health Network (QHN)?  

QHN is a Health Information Exchange, an organization the provides for the electronic, secure exchange of medical information, data and testing results between healthcare providers, hospitals, labs, and long-term care.

Why does it matter to you?

Now when one of our patients goes to see a specialist in Montrose or Grand Junction, to have surgery or diagnostic testing, all medical reports will be transmitted electronically directly back to the patient’s chart at Telluride Medical Center (TMC), so on your next visit to TMC your health information will be at your care provider’s fingertips. Shortly, our electronic medical record will also be able to send data to QHN, thus when you see a specialist, out of our area, they will likewise have access to the information in your TMC chart.

Let’s say you have a serious latex allergy and are involved in a severe accident and taken to a local Emergency Department outside the Telluride area. You are unconscious and unable to speak and unable to communicate information about your allergy, which could complicate or worsen your condition. Utilizing QHN, the treating medical provider can query your medical records, via the QHN, to access allergy information, medication records and other medical data to optimize your treatment.

Having access to the patient’s medical records also saves patients time and money by avoiding the duplication of diagnostic testing and exams. It seems all too frequently a patient is referred to another medical facility only to have many of the tests and studies repeated. This is often due to the lack of access to patient records and testing results. Nationally, this inefficiency adds up to millions of dollars in wasted healthcare expense.

The bottom line is, when you go from TMC to another medical care facility in Colorado, you can skip the arduous task of repeating your health history information and transporting medical records. Thanks to the QHN it will be accessible electronically, saving you time, money and frustration.

Learn more about the QHN here. Or reach TMC Executive Director, Gordon Reichard at 970.728.3848.

Editor’s note: The Telluride Medical Center is the only 24-hour emergency facility within 65 miles. You can choose your own medical provider visit with a specialist or take advantage of their Mountain Skin Care services. As a mountain town in a challenging, remote environment, a thriving medical center is vital to our community’s health.

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