L.A. Care Health Plan, the nation’s largest public health plan, announced today that the organization has received a $15.6 million federal grant to establish the Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center (REC), called HITEC-LA, that will help doctors in L.A. County adopt and use Electronic Health Records (EHRs) in a meaningful way. HITEC-LA will be the sole REC in L.A. County, under the terms of the grant. The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act), of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
“L.A. Care’s core mission is closely aligned with the HITECH Act’s intent to help doctors, especially those who serve as part of the safety net, deliver quality care to patients,” says Howard Kahn, CEO of L.A. Care Health Plan. “L.A. Care’s relationship with physicians and the safety net will help these doctors implement and achieve meaningful use of electronic health records (EHRs), which is critically important as they get ready for coverage expansion under health care reform.”
“Thousands of doctors in L.A. County and other health care providers will benefit from HITEC-LA’s services,” says Dr. Elaine Batchlor, Chief Medical Officer at L.A. Care Health Plan. “These services include assessing individual health information technology needs, EHR vendor selection, workflow redesign, on-site technical assistance, education and training, and meaningful use benchmarks, among other EHR support.”
The HITECH Act is intended to help providers in small practices and safety net settings with on-the-ground assistance. Providers do not need to be in L.A. Care’s network to participate in HITEC-LA’s activities.
L.A. Care is a leader in health information technology, investing over $5 million in grants, provider incentives, eHealth projects and learning collaboratives to promote the adoption of EHRs, ePrescribing, disease and immunization registry adoption and web-based consulting.
L.A. Care has a long history of collaboration and is a strong supporter of small and solo private physicians, Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) and safety-net clinics throughout Los Angeles County.
About L.A. Care
L.A. Care Health Plan (Local Initiative Health Authority of Los Angeles County) is a public entity and community-accountable health plan serving residents of Los Angeles County through a variety of programs including Medi-Cal, Healthy Families, L.A. Care’s Healthy Kids, and L.A. Care Health Plan Medicare Advantage HMO. L.A. Care is a leader in developing new programs through innovative partnerships designed to provide health coverage to vulnerable populations and to support the safety net. With over 800,000 members, L.A. Care is the nation’s largest public health plan. For more information, please visit www.lacare.org.