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June 2014
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  • If You Participate in ILHIE Connect, Take Notice!

    Officially launched earlier this year, the Illinois Health Information Exchange, or ILHIE Connect, is a statewide network that allows physicians, specialists, medical staff, hospitals and labs to release and retrieve a patient's health and related financial info from many different locations through a secure, centralized platform.

    What are physicians' responsibilities with ILHIE?

    If you treat Medicaid patients, you must participate in ILHIE Connect. Although Medicaid providers have to provide their master patient index to ILHIE Connect, patients must be advised of their ability to opt out of ILHIE.

    Physicians and other entities that choose to participate in ILHIE Connect are required to submit master patient files to the network. In addition, patients must be notified via the Notice of Privacy Practices that their medical records will be shared and may be accessed electronically by other ILHIE participants. Patients must also be provided with an opportunity to opt-out from having their records submitted to ILHIE. These notifications must occur beforethe patient's data is submitted.

    Some physicians may not be aware of their participation status in ILHIE Connect. Therefore, it is important that they to check with their health systems and independent physician associations regarding data sharing agreements that may include participation in ILHIE.

    ISMS advises physicians to not share medical records of patients who have been diagnosed with an ailment that could harm their reputation, such as:

    • HIV/AIDS
    • Sexually transmitted infections
    • Mental health issues

    Along with doctors not sharing sensitive medical information with ILHIE Connect, ISMS also suggests that patients with a sensitive diagnosis be encouraged to opt out of ILHIE participation. Patients can change their mind if they previously consented to participate and later become diagnosed with a sensitive ailment.

    How patients can opt out  

    To opt out, patients should complete the ILHIE Connect Opt-Out Form and turn it in to their physician or health care professional who will suspend the sharing of their medical records. Or they can get the form notarized and

    • Fax to 312-814-5073.
    • Scan and email to ILHIE.Privacy@illinois.gov.
    • Mail to ILHIE Authority, 100 West Randolph Street, Suite 4-750, Chicago, IL 60601.

    It may take up to 3 business days for ILHIE to suspend a patient's participation in the exchange.

    Questions? Please contact the ISMS Advocacy Team at 800-782-4767 ext. 1470 or by email.

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