House Bill 70
Would extend the deadlines by which certain providers are required to connect to and participate in North Carolina’s Health Information network known as NC Healthconnex. The General Assembly finds that controlling escalating healthcare costs of the Medicaid program and other state-funded health services is of significant importance to the state, its taxpayers, its Medicaid recipients, and other recipients of state-funded health services. Making demographic and clinical information available to the state and covered entities by secure electronic means will improve care coordination within and across health systems, increase care quality, enable more effective health management, and allow for more accurate measurement of care services and outcomes. The bill details which providers and entities are required to be part of the Mandatory Connection to the Health Information Exchange (HIE) and which ones are not required to be. The NC Department of Health and Human Services shall establish a process to grant exemptions to providers of Medicaid and other state-funded healthcare services for whom acquiring and implementing an electronic health record system and connecting to the HIE network would constitute an undue hardship. Lastly, connection is voluntary for certain providers, including personal care, community alternatives programs, private-duty nursing, and Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) service providers.