NC Office of Health Information Technology

The North Carolina Office of Health Information Technology (OHIT) was established in 2010 in accordance with Session Law (SL) 2009-0451, which stipulates that NC Department of Health and Human Services shall direct a health information technology management structure that is efficient and transparent and that is compatible with the ONC governance mechanism. The goal of NC OHIT is to facilitate the development of statewide interoperable health information systems and initiatives that will ultimately improve health and healthcare in North Carolina.

NC OHIT believes that open and transparent communication is crucial in advancing its goals across the state. This website will serve as a central repository for health IT announcements, events, resources, and initiatives in North Carolina. 

NC OHIT welcomes the opportunity to connect and coordinate our efforts with other agencies and organizations who are working to advance health IT in North Carolina. Email NC OHIT to begin the discussion around health IT projects and initiatives.

Health IT News

Health IT News

NC Opioid Action Plan 2.0 Data Dashboard

March 31, 2021

The ever-changing overdose epidemic has intensified the need for timely, accurate data from multiple sources. Sustained collaborations among public health, behavioral health, community coalitions, and other partners have enabled NC to improve upon our existing Opioid Action Plan Data Dashboard and launch this new 2.0 version. 
 
This updated data dashboard includes a shift to a new data visualization platform, the ability to easily print county-level data in factsheet form, and surveillance of additional metrics and new local actions. The addition of these local actions allows for statewide tracking of practical interventions spanning prevention, harm reduction, response, and treatment.

The dashboard can be found on the DHHS Opioid Epidemic website and here.

The development of the OAP 2.0 dashboard was informed by over two years of feedback from stakeholders. To share feedback with the dashboard development team, email substanceusedata@dhhs.nc.gov

NC*Notify: New Features and Capabilities

Mar 29, 2021

NC HealthConnex is pleased to offer new notification features and updates in the newest version of NC*Notify. Current subscribers across the state will now have access to COVID-19 lab result alerts, allowing them to react to positive cases in a more timely manner. 

In addition to the COVID-19 notifications, some of the new alerts that will be available include:

  • High Utilizer Alert - This notification will help providers identify frequent visitors to the Emergency Department (ED) (two or more visits in 90 days or less) or patients that are at a high risk for readmission (four or more admissions in 12 months).  
  • Dental Alerts - Providers will be alerted when patients utilize the emergency department for dental care. 
  • Care Team Change Alert - Providers will be informed when a new organization has subscribed to their patient. 
  • Diabetes Diagnosis Alert - Providers will be alerted upon a new diabetes and/or pre-diabetes diagnosis.  
  • Chronic Care Management Alert - Providers will receive an alert when a patient meets the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Chronic Care Management (CCM) services criteria.  

The COVID-19 alert feature will be made available automatically to NC*Notify dashboard subscribers. Other subscribers who would like access to the features mentioned above should visit the NC HIEA website to submit a request for services. The NC*Notify team will work closely with each participant to implement the upgrades outlined above. 

Have questions? Find Version 4 FAQs here. For more information or questions about NC*Notify, contact the NC HealthConnex Team at hiea@nc.gov.
 

NC OHIT Recognized for 2020 COVID-19 Efforts

Mar 25, 2021

Employees from across NCDHHS were honored with the annual NCDHHS Team Recognition Awards in a virtual event on March 25. The awards recognized NCDHHS teams who have gone above and beyond to further the NCDHHS mission and demonstrated the NCDHHS values during 2020. 

NC OHIT was part of the DHHS COVID-19 Data Visualization Team that received a 2020 DHHS Team Recognition Award for providing transparent COVID-19 data to the public. NC OHIT’s contribution to this collaborative effort by DHHS’ Information Technology Division, Data Office, and multiple divisions included analyzing responses to the COVID-19 Hospital Medical Surge Daily Survey to mitigate human error in reporting, tracking response rates, conducting targeted outreach, and producing daily reports for DHHS leadership, partners, and the NC DHHS COVID-19 Dashboard.
 

NCDHHS Expands Data on Federal Programs on Vaccine Dashboard

Mar 24, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has expanded its vaccine data dashboard to provide information on people who have been partially or fully vaccinated through the federal long-term care and retail pharmacy programs. Users will be able to view information about who has been vaccinated through these federal pharmacy programs by county, race, ethnicity, gender and age group, and by week.

The information will be available on the tabs “Summary Data” and “Demographics Data” on the dashboard through a drop-down option that allows users to view data for NC Providers, Federal Pharmacy Programs, or All Programs. As of today, the data show that 32.3% of adult North Carolinians have been at least partially vaccinated and 19.1% of adult North Carolinians have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Federal pharmacy program data include vaccine doses distributed through the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-Term Care Program and Federal Retail Pharmacy Program for COVID-19 Vaccination. The long-term care program is a partnership between the federal government and CVS and Walgreens to vaccinate individuals in North Carolina’s long-term care facilities, and the federal retail program provides doses to be administered through national and independent pharmacy partners such as CVS and Walgreens. Vaccine for federal pharmacy programs is provided directly from the federal government and does not come out of the states’ weekly allocation of doses.

Information on vaccine doses for federal pharmacy programs are only available for total doses that have arrived in North Carolina and for doses that have been administered. Therefore, some information will be displayed as “N/A” to indicate where information is not available for federal pharmacy programs. 

Unlike North Carolina providers, who are required to use the COVID-19 Vaccine Management System (CVMS) to register patients before giving vaccines, federal vaccine providers use their own systems to collect data. Therefore, data from federal pharmacy programs on race, ethnicity, gender and/or age group may be missing or undisclosed at a different rate than from North Carolina providers. 

Today’s dashboard update does not include data on vaccine administered through other federal channels such as the U.S. Department of Defense, Indian Health Services, Veterans Health Administration, and others. NCDHHS will continue to work with federal partners to share data on North Carolinians vaccinated through federal channels.

For more information and to view the NCDHHS vaccine data dashboard, visit covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard/vaccinations.

NCDHHS Expands Demographic Data on Vaccine Dashboard

Mar 9, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has expanded its vaccine data dashboard to provide more demographic data on people who are partially or fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Users will be able to see vaccinations by race, ethnicity, gender and age group by county, by week and since vaccinations began. The information will be displayed on a new tab named “Demographics” on the dashboard.

The new Demographics page will allow people to see week-to-week progress statewide and by county. The charts on this page can be filtered to show: 

  • Of the vaccines administered each week what percent were administered by race, ethnicity, age group and gender. The data can be viewed by percent of people at least partially vaccinated and percent of people fully vaccinated. A cumulative total is also presented.  
  • The percent of the population by race, ethnicity, age group and gender that has been partially or fully vaccinated. A cumulative total is also presented.  

The Vaccination Summary also includes new information, including: 

  • Percent of population at least partially vaccinated
  • Percent of population fully vaccinated
  • Single shot doses allocated by federal government, arrived in North Carolina, total doses administered and percent arrived doses administered for both NC providers and the Federal Long-Term Care program

North Carolina has been recognized for the quality and transparency of its vaccine data dashboard. For the second week in a row, Bloomberg News scored North Carolina as best in the nation on data quality, reporting race and ethnicity data for nearly 100 percent of people vaccinated in the state.

Data by demographics do not currently include information on doses that have been administered in NC through federal programs. Percent of population metrics are calculated using the entire NC population (i.e., all ages). When a county has a population of fewer than 500 individuals for a specific demographic group, some data are suppressed to protect patient privacy. Data shown are preliminary and may change. There can be a 72-hour lag in data reported to NCDHHS.
 

NCDHHS Updates County Alert System, Shows Continued Progress in NC

Mar 4, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services today updated the COVID-19 County Alert System, which shows six red counties — a decrease from 27 red counties on the previous Feb. 22 County Alert System and the fewest red counties in the state since the start of the County Alert System.

"North Carolinians are pulling together to slow the spread of the virus by getting vaccinated and keeping up the 3Ws," said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. "While we are pleased with the improving trends, there is still more work to do to protect each other."

Today’s update also lists 34 orange counties and 60 yellow counties — both changes from 40 orange counties and 33 yellow counties on Feb 22.

North Carolina’s key metrics continue to move in a positive direction with decreasing trends in numbers of COVID-19 cases reported each day, people being hospitalized with COVID-19, people in the intensive care unit and the percent of tests that are positive. NCDHHS also announced Thursday case rates are down more than 15-fold in long-term care facility settings. 

Red and orange counties need to do even more to slow the spread of COVID-19 in their communities; it is strongly recommended these counties go further and build upon current requirements outlined in the County Alert System.

The COVID-19 County Alert System gives individuals, businesses and community organizations and public officials a tool to understand how their county is faring and to make decisions about actions to take slow the spread of the virus, and it uses COVID-19 case rates, the percent of tests that are positive and hospital impact within the county to categorize counties into the following tiers: 

  • Yellow: Significant Community Spread
  • Orange: Substantial Community Spread
  • Red: Critical Community Spread
     

NC*Notify: COVID-19 and Other New Alerts Available

Feb 25, 2021

NC*Notify is a subscription-based service from NC HealthConnex that notifies providers as their patients receive services across the care continuum. Based on admission, discharge, and transfer data received from more than 100 participating hospitals plus encounter data from more than 6,000 ambulatory care settings, the NC*Notify real-time event notifications provide care teams with valuable information that spans geographic and care settings and support state and federal efforts to focus on patient centered care. 

Current subscribers to NC*Notify will now have access to COVID-19 lab result alerts, allowing them to react to positive cases in a more timely manner. The COVID-19 alert feature will be made available automatically to NC*Notify dashboard subscribers.

In addition to the COVID-19 notifications, some of the new alerts that are now available include:

  • High Utilizer Alert - This notification will help providers identify frequent visitors to the Emergency Department (ED) (two or more visits in 90 days or less) or patients that are at a high risk for readmission (four or more admissions in 12 months).  
  • Dental Alerts - Providers will be alerted when patients utilize the emergency department for dental care. 
  • Care Team Change Alert - Providers will be informed when a new organization has subscribed to their patient. 
  • Diabetes Diagnosis Alert - Providers will be alerted upon a new diabetes and/or pre-diabetes diagnosis for patients they are monitoring. 
  • Chronic Care Management Alert - Providers will receive an alert when a patient meets the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Chronic Care Management (CCM) services criteria.  

Subscribers who would like access to the features mentioned above should visit the NC HIEA website to submit a request for services. The NC*Notify team will work closely with each participant to implement the upgrades outlined above. 

For more information or questions about NC*Notify, contact the NC HealthConnex Team at hiea@nc.gov. To learn how to enroll in NC*Notify, click here.
 

County Demographic Data for Vaccines Administered Now Available on North Carolina Vaccine Data Dashboard

Feb 5, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has added new county demographic data for COVID-19 vaccinations to the vaccine data dashboard. Data on people who have received the first dose or both the first and second dose of the vaccine are available by race, ethnicity, gender and age group and can be filtered by county. Data includes information on the percent of doses administered by demographic categories and information on the percent of the population that has received at least the first dose, or first and second dose, of the vaccine. Data on demographics do not include information on doses that have been administered through the federal long-term care facilities program.

“North Carolina continues to lead the country on data transparency with a focus on race and ethnicity data,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. “More importantly, we use this critical data to drive our vaccine operations work to ensure equity across our state.”

North Carolina was one of the first states to release statewide race and ethnicity data for COVID-19 vaccines. The state is committed to holding itself and vaccine providers accountable for providing equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines. The current allocation process includes a three-week guaranteed baseline amount of vaccines for counties with higher numbers of low-income adults 65 and older and historically marginalized populations 65 and older. In addition to the baseline allocations, NCDHHS has set-aside approximately 30,000 vaccine doses for community vaccination events and new providers that will reach underserved communities. 

Vaccine providers are expected to administer vaccines equitably. The percentage of vaccine administered to historically marginalized and minority populations in a county should meet or exceed the population estimates of these communities in their county and region. The expanded data on the dashboard will allow counties to monitor their progress.

Percent of population metrics are calculated using the entire North Carolina population (i.e., all ages). When a county has a population of fewer than 500 individuals for a specific demographic group, some data are suppressed to protect patient privacy. Data shown are preliminary and may change. There can be a 72-hour lag in data reported to NCDHHS. The state’s dashboard is the source for the most accurate and timely information for vaccine data for the state. It is updated Monday through Friday. 

Learn more at YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov (English) or vacunate.nc.gov (Spanish).

NC COVID-19 Data Dashboard Update Includes Delayed Reports from Urgent Care Tests; Cases Still Trending Downward

Feb 3, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services announced that today’s COVID-19 Data Dashboard includes a large number of cases from tests performed at FastMed

Urgent Care clinics during December 2020 and January 2021 that had not been previously reported to NCDHHS. These delayed reports account for 7,912 of the 12,079 COVID-19 cases reported today. Cases of COVID-19 in North Carolina have been trending downward since the second week of January.

In addition to the one-time increase in positive cases, the delayed reports from FastMed also added approximately 40,000 total test results to the dashboard.

FastMed has fixed its reporting process, and the state is now receiving results from the company. This delay in reporting to NCDHHS did not impact patient notifications or care from FastMed. Prior to December 2020, all testing from FastMed was done by third-party labs and test results were reported to NCDHHS from those labs and included in the NC COVID-19 Dashboard.

Updated case numbers, test information and other COVID-19 metrics are available on the NC COVID-19 Data Dashboard: https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard.
 

New Tools Help North Carolinians Get Vaccine Information 

Feb 2, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services released new tools to help North Carolinians get their COVID-19 vaccine questions answered and to find vaccine locations in the state.

“We want North Carolinians to be able to get answers to their questions – whether that is about the vaccines and how they work, when they are eligible to take their shot, or where their spot is to get a vaccine. They can call our hotline (888-675-4567) or go to YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov and get honest information,” said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D. 

The Find a Vaccine Location search tool lets North Carolinians enter their ZIP code or current location to find nearby vaccine providers. The Find a Vaccine Location tool will be updated regularly with the latest available data. 

Last week, NCDHHS launched an online tool to help North Carolinians know when they will be eligible to get their vaccine. Find My Vaccine Group walks users through a series of questions to determine which vaccine group they are in. People can then sign up to be notified when their group can get vaccinated.
 
Learn more at YourSpotYourShot.nc.gov (English) or Vacunate.nc.gov (Spanish).

Click here for more details on these new tools.
 

DHHS and NC HealthConnex Partner to Leverage HIE for COVID-19 Vaccine Reporting

Jan 27, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NC DHHS), the North Carolina Health Information Exchange Authority (NC HIEA), and the NC HIEA’s technology partner, SAS, have partnered to report COVID-19 vaccine administrations from across the state.

NC DHHS manages the COVID-19 Vaccine Management System (CVMS), a cloud-based vaccine management solution for COVID-19 that enables vaccine management and data sharing across the care continuum. This system will allow for vaccine providers in North Carolina to submit cases or inquiries regarding COVID-19 vaccines. 

The state-designated health information exchange, NC HealthConnex, will offer connectivity to CVMS and patient matching across sources to enhance vaccine data by utilizing the NC HealthConnex master patient index.

NC HealthConnex will be receiving COVID-19 vaccine administration data from points of care such as CVS, Walgreens, hospitals and health systems, and electronic health records (EHRs). To reduce double data entry, NC HealthConnex will help with integrating health systems’ EHRs with the CVMS database. This data exchange through NC HealthConnex will reduce the need for manual entry of vaccine administration data directly into CVMS. 

NC HealthConnex is a secure electronic network that gives authorized health care providers the ability to access and share patient information across a statewide information network. NC HealthConnex is actively working with hospitals and health systems to ensure access to CVMS with plans to onboard additional health care organizations who administer vaccines soon. For more information, contact the NC HealthConnex Team at hiea@nc.gov.

NCDHHS Adds New Data to Vaccine Dashboard 

Jan 26, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has expanded its vaccine data dashboard to provide information about vaccine doses promised to and received by the state. Users also will be able to see the percent of doses received that have been administered. The updated dashboard Includes the following fields: 

  • Doses Allocated by the Federal Government
  • Doses Arrived in North Carolina
  • Total Doses Administered
  • Percent of Arrived Doses Administered

The current vaccines require two shots, so the information is provided by first doses, second doses and total doses. The data is also presented for both NC vaccine providers and the federal long-term care program. 

North Carolina was among the first states to include statewide information about people vaccinated by race and ethnicity. Data is also provided for the state by gender and age.

North Carolinians can find out when they will be eligible to get their vaccine through a new online tool, Find My Vaccine Group. The screener walks users through a series of questions to determine which vaccine group they are in. People can then sign up to be notified when their group can get vaccinated. 

Learn more at YourShotYourSpot.nc.gov (English) or covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vacuna (Spanish). 

Click here for more details on the updated dashboard.

NCDHHS Launches “Find My Vaccine Group” to Help North Carolinians Know When They Have a Spot to Take Their Shot

Jan 25, 2021

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services launched a new online tool to help North Carolinians know when they will be eligible to get their vaccine. Find My Vaccine Group walks users through a series of questions to determine which vaccine group they are in. People can then sign up to be notified when their group can get vaccinated.

North Carolina is currently vaccinating people in Groups 1 and 2, which include health care workers, long-term care staff and residents and people 65 and older. Group 3 will include frontline essential workers; Group 4 will include adults at high risk for exposure and increased risk of severe illness; and Group 5 will include everyone. Detailed information about each group is online at YourShotYourSpot.nc.gov (English) or covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vacuna (Spanish).

Future updates will include a vaccine finder and other interactive features so that every North Carolinian has a spot for information and is able to take their shot. 

For more information and to find your vaccine group, visit findmygroup.nc.gov.

Click here for more details.

NCDHHS Adds Vaccination Data to COVID-19 Data Dashboard 

Dec 22, 2020

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services today added data on people vaccinated to the NC COVID-19 Dashboard. Data will be provided for the total number of people statewide and by county of residence who have received the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Data for people who have received the second dose of the vaccine will be added in January.

In addition to counts, the dashboard will include statewide data on vaccinations by race, ethnicity, gender and age group. The data will provide insight into the total people vaccinated across the state and the different demographic groups that have received each dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. The initial data will not include vaccinations in long-term care facilities as those are being managed by the federal government through a contract with CVS and Walgreens. NCDHHS is working with both companies to access and report this data.

The vaccine data will be updated weekly on Tuesdays. NCDHHS will continue to expand the information provided as more people are vaccinated across the state.

North Carolina’s information on people vaccinated comes from the COVID-19 Vaccine Management System (CVMS), a secure, web-based system provided for free to all who administer COVID-19 vaccinations. It helps vaccine providers know who has been vaccinated with which vaccine to make sure people get the second dose of the same vaccine at the right time. It also helps people register for vaccination at the appropriate time and allows the state to manage vaccine supply. 

Visit https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/vaccines for more information on the vaccines and vaccine distribution in North Carolina. 

Click here for more details.

National Rural Health Day

Nov 19, 2020

National Rural Health Day falls on the third Thursday in November each year and recognizes the efforts of those serving the health needs of an estimated 57 million people across the nation. NCDHHS’ Office of Rural Health proudly recognizes the innovation, quality of care, and dedication of health professionals and volunteers in communities during National Rural Health Day 2020. 

Rural populations continue to lag behind their urban counterparts on many health measures. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found rural communities had a higher rate of unhealthy behaviors, less access to health care, and less access to healthy foods compared with urban areas. In North Carolina, where 41 percent — or 4 million people — live in rural areas, the study has larger implications. 

Lowering the rate of death in rural areas will take a variety of interventions, including reducing the number of uninsured people, increasing access to healthy food and affordable housing, and addressing economic factors that contribute to disease.  

"North Carolina’s rural communities are resilient and strong. They face adversity head on and show up for their neighbors. That is the power of rural we are celebrating," said NCDHHS Secretary Mandy K. Cohen, M.D.

Surviving and Thriving: The Power of Rural is 100% Community 

Katherine Ortega Courtney, Ph.D., and Dominic Cappello, authors of "100% Community: Ensuring 10 Vital Services for Surviving and Thriving," discussed their groundbreaking research and roadmap they've created to help rural counties learn how to work together in new ways to create local systems of health, safety, education and economic stability. To watch the recording of this event, click here.

For additional information about National Rural Health Day, visit www.PowerofRural.org

NCDHHS Expands Demographic Data for COVID-19 Cases 

Nov 13, 2020

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services today expanded the demographic data for NC COVID-19 cases and added new filtering functions to the NC COVID-19 Dashboard. Demographic data for COVID-19 total cases are available by age group, gender, race and ethnicity and can be filtered by county. The information will be displayed on a new Case Demographics Page on the dashboard.

The information will be displayed both over time by the week of specimen collection and total data since the start of the pandemic. Demographic information is not available for all cases since some people cannot be reached or may choose not to disclose this information. Furthermore, because demographic data are often obtained through case investigations by local health departments, there can be a lag in when the data are available. Therefore, data displayed for the most recent two-week period are often incomplete. 

When a county has a population of fewer than 500 individuals for a specific demographic group or fewer than three cases occurred in a week, some data are suppressed to protect patient privacy. Trend charts will display data for the latest week when that week is complete and seven days of data are available.

In addition to the demographic data update, two other updates are being made today to the NC COVID-19 Dashboard: 

Hospitalization Data: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has revised the criteria for reporting COVID-19 hospitalizations. Previously, the CDC required that hospitals report patients only when they were under isolation precautions, which is typically a maximum of 21 days. Because patients may suffer the effects of COVID-19 for a longer period of time, the CDC now requires that hospitalizations be reported for the entire length of stay. As a result, it is likely that North Carolina will see a one-time increase in hospitalizations on November 13 and a continued higher number under the new definition.

Time of Reporting: NCDHHS is modifying the time that the data are pulled for the dashboard. As a result, there will be a one-time artificial decrease in the number of tests, cases and deaths on November 13, as the data will cover 10 hours as opposed to the standard 24 hours. Future data will cover the standard 24-hour period.

For COVID-19 data in North Carolina, visit https://covid19.ncdhhs.gov/dashboard
 

Health IT Initiatives Around North Carolina

Health IT Initiatives Around North Carolina

NC OHIT Health IT Projects

NC Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program
The NC Medicaid EHR Incentive Program was created by the federal government as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. The program encourages eligible providers to adopt, implement, or upgrade (AIU) to a certified EHR technology, and then to demonstrate meaningful use (MU) of that technology with the goal of improving patient care while also reducing health care costs. The NC Medicaid EHR Incentive Program issued its first payment in 2011 and eligible providers may attest through October 2021.

emPOWER
Thousands of NC Medicaid beneficiaries living at home rely on electricity-dependent durable medical equipment such as ventilators, electric wheelchairs, and infusion pumps. Natural or man-made incidents resulting in power outages can thrust these at-risk individuals into life-threatening situations. NC emPOWER uses Medicaid claims data to identify these populations for the NC DHHS Public Health Preparedness and Response Branch and their partners to support targeted emergency preparedness, response, and recovery activities. NC emPOWER provides a de-identified monthly summary report by ZIP Code and county to aid in planning for hospital surge and sheltering and evacuation needs and in case of emergency can securely provide patient-level reports by impacted geography to assist in rapidly identifying, locating, and voluntarily evacuating at-risk individuals and reconnecting them with their health care providers.

North Carolina State Medicaid Health Information Technology Plan
The State Medicaid Health Information Technology Plan (SMHP) provides an overview of HIT initiatives in North Carolina and outlines NCDHHS’ strategy through 2021 for implementing the NC Medicaid EHR Incentive Program. The SMHP also details various HIT initiatives that are in progress across the state and addresses the state’s HIT Roadmap, including goals and benchmarking activities.

COVID-19 Hospital Medical Surge Daily Survey  
On April 4, 2020, NC OHIT became a key contributor on the NCDHHS team responsible for tracking and reporting COVID-19 data in North Carolina. The NC OHIT team analyzed survey responses to mitigate human error in reporting, tracked response rates, conducted targeted outreach, and managed the help desk for the COVID-19 Hospital Medical Surge Daily Survey. NC OHIT’s role in maximizing completeness and accuracy of hospital data was crucial as it aided leaders in data-based decision making in North Carolina’s battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. NC OHIT’s last day working on this project was September 1, 2020, when the state transitioned from manual submission of data to an automated process. For these efforts, NC OHIT was part of the DHHS COVID-19 Data Visualization Team that received a 2020 DHHS Team Recognition Award for providing transparent COVID-19 data to the public.

NC Behavioral Health EHR Program
NC DHHS, NC OHIT, NC Medicaid, the NC Office of Rural Health (ORH) and the NC Health Information Exchange Authority (NC HIEA) launched the NC Behavioral Health EHR Program to assist behavioral health, mental health, and intellectual development and disability practices with purchasing EHR technology and establishing connectivity to NC HealthConnex. There was $2.5 million dollars in available funds. Applications had to be submitted by May 31, 2018 and were accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. The program ended in November 2019, after all reimbursements had been distributed.

 

State of North Carolina organizations with health IT projects/initiatives

Please note, this is not an exhaustive list.

Private/non-profit organizations in North Carolina with health IT services/initiatives

Please note, this is not an exhaustive list.

Health Information Exchanges in North Carolina

  • Atrium Health CareConnect – an HIE that provides a secure method to share patient information between providers at participating facilities. To date, the portal is used and accessed by over 240 non-Atrium organizations. Click here for the list of partner connections and users’ organizations.
  • Coastal Connect Health Information Exchange – was established in 2009 by provider stakeholders: Dosher Memorial, New Hanover Regional Medical Center, Pender Memorial, Southeastern Health, Wilmington Health and most recently Onslow Memorial. The HIE technology, with 265 data contributors, creates the secure data sharing network for unaffiliated providers in southeastern North Carolina. Connected providers include Bladen County, Brunswick County, Columbus County, Cumberland County, Duplin County, Hoke County, New Hanover County, Onslow County, Pender County, Robeson County and Sampson County. 
  • Mission Health Connect – serves as the Regional HIE for western North Carolina, serving the far western 18 counties of North Carolina. Mission Health Connect is integrated with external connections to other health systems/HIE connections and extends to 59 of the total 100 counties in NC.
  • NC HIEA – operates NC HealthConnex, which is North Carolina’s state-designated HIE providing a secure, standardized electronic system in which providers can share important patient health information.
Health IT Resources

Health IT Resources

Please note, NC OHIT is sharing these websites only as a resource. NC OHIT is not a sponsor of these sites and does not have any responsibility over the posted content.

North Carolina Organizations

  • The North Carolina Chapter of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (NCHIMSS) develops educational programs, promotes networking opportunities, and hosts conferences and symposia to spark the conversation around improving healthcare information and technology in North Carolina. Their website links members and nonmembers to their calendar of events and industry resources.
  • The North Carolina Health Information Management Association (NCHIMA) is the component state organization of the American Health Information Management Association. NCHIMA’s mission is to lead the health informatics and information management community to advance professional practice and standards in North Carolina. NCHIMA represents more than 3,000 committed health information professionals who are employed in such roles as HIM Directors, information analysts, quality management analysts, coders, risk managers, compliance officers, consultants, educators and technicians. NCHIMA provides member services, such as continuing education and communication and works to educate the public about the nature of our profession, and to advise the public on important issues such as health information and privacy.

National Organizations

  • Healthcare Innovation is suitable for a broad audience and engages with thought leaders across the entire healthcare industry. The website features diverse topics including Population Health, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Cybersecurity, Finance/Revenue, HIEs, Clinical IT, and imaging. Information is shared through different mediums such as articles, blogs, webinars, and interviews. Healthcare Innovation also provides news coverage and brings to its readers events from the industry, industry-related summits and more. An annual subscription is free to qualified healthcare professionals.
  • Healthcare IT Connect provides free access to virtual Health IT education, conferences, and more. Visit http://www.healthcareitconnect.com/ to join the conversation with federal and state leaders as they discuss trends and lessons learned during their HIT strategic planning and implementation.
  • HIMSS is a global advisor and thought leader supporting the transformation of health through the application of information and technology.

Federal Government Organizations

  • Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) is an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is the primary federal agency for improving health care to people who are geographically isolated, economically or medically vulnerable.
  • The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Health IT initiative is part of the Nation's strategy to put information technology to work in health care. By developing secure and private electronic health records for most Americans and making health information available electronically when and where it is needed, health IT can improve the quality of care, even as it makes health care more cost-effective.
  • The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) is the administration’s leader in health IT efforts and is a resource to the entire health system to support the adoption of health information technology and the promotion of nationwide health information exchange to improve health care. 
Funding Opportunities

Funding Opportunities

NC Office of Rural Health's Community Health Grant

Community Health Grant funds, supported through the North Carolina General Assembly, are for assuring access to primary and preventive care to meet the health needs of our state’s most vulnerable populations. 
 
Primary care safety net organizations that care for underserved and medically indigent patients in the state are eligible to apply for this funding to pay for patient care through encounter-based reimbursement or through reimbursement for eligible expenses. 
 
Applicants may request up to $150,000 per year of the grant.    
 
Applications for State Fiscal Year 2022 were accepted November 20, 2020 through February 15, 2021. For further information on the grant program, contact Ginny Ingram at ginny.ingram@dhhs.nc.gov.

Please click on the links below for federal funding opportunities in health IT.

Studying Health IT and Informatics in North Carolina

Studying Health IT and Informatics in North Carolina

North Carolina is home to some of the most prestigious schools and universities in the nation. Click on the hyperlinks below to learn more about some of the Health IT and Informatics programs being offered in our state.

Please note, this list is not exhaustive of the institutions in North Carolina that offer degrees and certificates in health informatics and health IT. NC OHIT does not endorse or sponsor any of these programs.  

Certification Programs

Duke University: Certificate in Health Informatics 
Durham, NC. Courses and practicum may be completed online. This program is designed for those with an undergraduate or graduate degree in a clinical area who seek knowledge of Health Informatics principles, methods, and applications. This short introductory level program provides an overview of the field of Health Informatics and foundational information about how data, information, and knowledge are represented and used in health applications.

East Carolina University: Health Informatics Certificate 
Greenville, NC. Courses are offered in person in Greenville, online or through a hybrid of in-person and online. The Health Informatics (HI) graduate certificate equips students with the knowledge and skills needed for employment and success in the emerging field of HI. The program is designed for health care workers who do not have informatics training and for information technology workers who do not have health care experience and may wish to seek employment in health care as health informaticians.  The objective is to expand upon the student's current knowledge skills to make them more capable and well trained in the field of HI.

East Carolina University: Health Information Management Certificate 
Greenville, NC. Courses are offered in person, online or through a hybrid of in-person and online. The Health Information Management (HIM) graduate certificate provides students who already have a bachelor's degree the knowledge and skills needed in order to serve as a critical link between health care providers, payers and patients. The curriculum is designed to help students develop characteristics associated with an effective leader in health information management: critical thinking skills, problem solving abilities, communication and interpersonal skills, and ethical values. Graduates of the HIM certificate program are eligible to apply to take the RHIA registration examination offered by the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA).

East Carolina University: MBA with Health Care Management Certificate 
Greenville, NC. Courses are offered in-person, online or through a hybrid of in-person and online. The HCM certificate program is an option for MBA students to further their knowledge and skills in managing health care organizations. Students are prepared for careers as managers in a variety of health care situations. The knowledge gained from this certificate can be applied to hospitals, ambulatory care centers, long term care facilities, health research and clinical trials firms, home health care agencies, and health insurance companies.

North Carolina Central University: Health Informatics Certificate 
Durham, NC. Courses are offered online. The Certificate in Health Informatics program at the NCCU School of Library and Information Science focuses on knowledge and skills used in health or biomedical informatics, including the use of digital or electronic health records and data.

University of North Carolina at Charlotte: Graduate Certificate in Health Informatics and Analytics
Charlotte, NC. Courses are offered in person. This program is a subset of UNCC’s MS curriculum and provides students with a foundation in health informatics that complements related professional degrees and allows students to seamlessly progress fully into the master’s program in health informatics and analytics if desired.
 

Associates Degree Programs

Brunswick Community College: Health Information Technology Program 
Bolivia, NC. Courses are offered in person. The Health Information Technology curriculum provides individuals with the knowledge and skills to process, analyze, abstract, compile, maintain, manage, and report health information. 

Forsyth Technical Community College: Health Information Technology Program 
Winston-Salem, NC. Courses are primarily offered online, except for general education courses and Professional Practice Experiences (PPE). The Health Information Technology program prepares students for a career working with health information in diverse roles in a variety of healthcare settings. 

Pitt Community College: Health Information Technology Program 
Winterville, NC. Courses are primarily offered online, but PPE courses are will occur near the student’s region. The HIT curriculum provides individuals with the knowledge and skills to process, analyze, abstract, compile, maintain, manage, and report health information. 
 

Undergraduate Degree Programs 

East Carolina University: Bachelor of Science in Health Information Management
Greenville, NC. Courses are offered in person and online. The BS in Health Information Management (HIM) emphasizes the development of skills for managing health information and the systems that collect, store, retrieve, disseminate, and communicate said information to support organizational operations and clinical and business decision making.

East Carolina University: Bachelor of Science in Health Services Management 
Greenville, NC. Course are offered through a combination of in-person and online. The BS in Health Services Management provides health care practitioners and others with the skills and competencies to function as supervisors and managers in health care settings. Graduates will be prepared for mid-level management positions or for entrance into master's programs in allied health.
 

Graduate Degree Programs

Duke University: Master of Science in Nursing, Health Informatics major 
Durham, NC. Courses are offered in person and online. The health informatics major in our MSN Program prepares you to develop knowledge and skills in clinical information systems, strategic planning, project management, and a variety of technologies. Knowledge builds on concepts of data-information-knowledge meta-structures and incorporates systems lifecycle planning and expert clinical domain modeling. 

Duke University: Master of Management in Clinical Informatics 
Durham, NC. Courses are offered in person and online. The MMCi program prepares graduates for managerial and executive positions in health care. They will learn to operationalize, manage, and evaluate health IT in a variety of settings, including academia, government, and industry. Students will acquire the knowledge and skills to merge technology with research and patient care and help improve human health.

Duke University: Master in Interdisciplinary Data Science (MIDS), concentration in Biomedical Informatics 
Durham, NC. Courses are offered in person. This is a full-time two-year education program for students who want to work in biomedical informatics where strong data science skills are needed to address future biomedical informatics challenges. Students will be exposed to the interdisciplinary application of data science while developing skills applied to real-world problems in healthcare.

East Carolina University: Master of Science in Health Informatics and Information Management 
Greenville, NC. Courses are offered in person or online. As the only CAHIIM accredited master’s program in the state, this is an intensive, fast-paced program for anyone interested in working in the exciting field of health care with an interest in technology. Our program offers a unique and comprehensive curriculum that prepares students to take on leadership and technology roles in the design, development and management of enterprise level health information systems.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: Master of Professional Science in Biomedical and Health Informatics 
Chapel Hill, NC. Courses are offered in-person or online. Graduates of the program will gain knowledge and skills in:

  • Management of large-scale projects related to clinical and public health information systems,
  • Development and evaluation of health information systems that impact clinical decision making and health care quality, and
  • Analysis and management of health data for improvement in clinical practice, biomedical research and public health services.

University of North Carolina at Charlotte: Master of Science in Health Informatics and Analytics
Charlotte, NC. Courses are offered in person. This program is designed for working adults with a variety of professional backgrounds including health and computing, as well as those interested in transitioning into the field. The newly revised curriculum stresses hands-on, team-based learning. The professional internship and experiential capstone courses immerse students directly in the workplace and use real-world data sets to address current challenges.
 

Doctoral Degree Programs

Duke University: Doctor of Nursing Practice and Doctor of Philosophy with Specialty in Informatics  
Durham, NC. Courses are offered in person. Students seeking doctoral level training in Nursing may specialize in health informatics. While the foci of the DNP and PhD degrees differ, students pursuing either degree may elect health informatics as the topic of their doctoral research.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: PhD in Health Informatics 
Chapel Hill, NC. Courses are offered in person. The PhD in Health Informatics program at UNC Chapel Hill prepares graduate students to contribute to the field of biomedical and health informatics studies through research, teaching and exposure to practical biomedical and health informatics challenges. The program is structured to support interdisciplinary research training, gaining teaching experience, and administrative knowledge acquisition. It includes rigorous coursework prior to dissertation research and is designed to adapt to the diverse needs of program students.
 

Stay Connected

Stay Connected

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NC OHIT is not a sponsor of these sites and does not have any responsibility over the posted content.

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NC Division of Public Health (DPH) works to promote and contribute to the highest possible level of health for the people of North Carolina. Follow them on Twitter for the latest news and updates via @NCPublicHealth.

NC Health Information Exchange Authority’s (NC HIEA) free e-newsletter provides the latest on NC HIEA trainings, events and up-to-date information on NC HealthConnex.

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NCTracks is the multi-payer Medicaid Management Information System for NCDHHS. For NCTracks newsletters, NCTracks Communications and updates, click here to join the NCTracks email distribution list.

NC Area Health Education Centers (NC AHEC) provides information on professional development, training opportunities and more through their free e-newsletter. Click here, scroll to the bottom of the page and enter a valid email address to subscribe.

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