New York REC enrolls more than 5,000 members

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As part of statewide initiatives to encourage the adoption of medical informatics systems, a regional extension center (REC) in New York recently announced that more than 5,000 facilities and healthcare providers have enrolled in its program, reports Healthcare IT News.

The New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeHC) has enrolled 5,107 healthcare providers and care facilities in its program designed to assist medical centers transition from paper-based records to medical informatics systems. The NYeHC is the fourth-largest REC in the U.S. in terms of enrollment figures, and achieved its enrollment goals two weeks earlier than expected, making it only the second in the country to do so.

The REC covers the entirety of New York with the exception of New York City, which is covered by the NYC Reach REC. The group also boasts the second-highest number of member providers that have attained stage one of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ meaningful use federal financial incentives.

“We are thrilled to have reached our goal for enrollees; however, it’s really step one towards our ultimate goal,” Paul Wilder, director of the REC, told the news source. “Now we’re looking forward to using the strong relationships we have with our regional partners to move all of our REC providers to meaningful use.”

RECs have been instrumental in the widespread adoption of medical informatics technology in many healthcare facilities. Earlier this year, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that more than 100,000 primary care providers nationwide had enrolled in programs with RECs to accelerate the implementation of clinical informatics networks. This figure represents more than a third of all such medical professionals in the U.S.

The REC program was enacted by the HHS in 2009 as part of the Health Information Technology Economic and Clinical Health Act to provide healthcare facilities with expert guidance on the selection, implementation and usage of medical informatics technology.