The San Diego Health Connect (SDHC), a community wide health information exchange (HIE), has selected US-based cloud-based patient matching solutions provider Verato to improve patient record exchange among its member hospital systems.

SDHC will use the Verato platform to augment patient matching functions critical to its patient record location and exchange services.

SDHC allows the exchange of electronic medical records between 25 different clinics and hospital systems located across San Diego and Imperial County.

These include UCSD Medical Center, Scripps Health, Sharp Healthcare, Kaiser Permanente, Rady Children’s Hospital, the VA Hospital and the County’s Health and Human Services Agency.

The decision to implement Verato solution follows a collaborative pilot employing the technology, which showed an increase in the number of matched records in SDHC’s MPI by 110%, reducing the time this outcome would usually take from years to a few weeks.

Currently, the SDHC MPI manages the identifying information for more than 3.4 million people across the San Diego region and ensures the records belong to the correct patients.

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SDHC noted that due to stringent matching criteria, its MPI matching algorithm excluded 187,000 patients because of unresolved patient identification. When these same records were run through Verato, 75% of those mismatches were resolved.

SDHC executive director Dan Chavez said: "SDHC’s mission is to facilitate the exchange of medical records throughout our region so doctors can provide better patient care, decrease the number of duplicate tests and procedures, and decrease costs.

"With high-quality data and stringent patient matching standards, member providers will have access to a complete picture of a patient’s health information."

"Foundational to exchanging records is the ability to match various records that belong to the same patient, and Verato can increase our match rates without sacrificing SDHC’s stringent data governance standards."

Under the deal, the Verato solution will continue to augment the MPI database through an automated data management feature aimed at detecting matches missed by the standard MPI process.

Verato CEO Mark LaRow said: "Many organisations believe that the matching capabilities in their MPI tools are sufficient for matching patient records.

"However, at best, these tools typically result in a 70% match rate given typical error rates in identity data.

"The other 30% of unmatched identities must be manually resolved or falsely categorised as non-matches, which prevents the information from reaching a patient’s care providers during the care visit.

"Using our innovative, smart, referential matching engine, Verato will help SDHC match patient records, cutting the huge cost and effort associated with manual data quality and stewardship efforts.

"With high-quality data and stringent patient matching standards, member providers will have access to a complete picture of a patient’s health information."

Verato provides cloud-based platform that matches and connects customer records and identities across systems and enterprises.