MAG to lead key panel on HIT at ‘Health Connect South’


Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) Executive Director Donald J. Palmisano Jr. will lead a key ‘Critical Data for All: Integrated Health Information’ panel discussion during the ‘2018 Health Connect South’ event, which will take place at the Georgia Aquarium this Thursday, September 27.  

The MAG panel will feature Laura McCrary, Ed.D., the senior vice president of KAMMCO Health Solutions, Inc., and Thomas Bat, M.D., the CEO and medical director of North Atlanta Primary Care – which has 11 practice sites in the north Atlanta metro area and North Georgia that care for more than 100,000 patients. 

The panel will address a number of important issues, including how a health information exchange can benefit patients and physicians and other allied stakeholders and how physicians can use data analytics to create newfound value. The panel will also discuss Georgia’s Prescription Drug Monitoring Program and how a health information exchange has transformed the health care system in Kansas.  

“EHR will only reach its full potential when it becomes patient-centered and physician-led as opposed to the public and private payer cost control exercise it is today,” says Palmisano. “If we do that and address the connectivity piece, we will have a better and more efficient health care system in Georgia.”  

Dr. Bat, whose practice recently started using the MAG-endorsed HealtheParadigm health information exchange, is convinced that, “We will see exponential change occur when physicians and allied stakeholders – including patients, hospitals, the state’s large health care systems, pharmacists, and insurers – are truly able to exchange data in a seamless, real-time way, and we are then able to convert that data into actionable intelligence.”

He adds that, “The exchange of health information technology can improve patient outcomes and satisfaction, and it can lower costs by reducing duplicity and inefficiencies.”

Meanwhile, McCrary stresses that, “A health information exchange like HealtheParadigm results in better care, better care coordination, and better patient safety because it enables participating physicians to have easy access to a patient’s longitudinal records – including any diagnosis, treatment, lab results, and medications – from every participating provider the patient has ever seen in every setting. We know this is possible because we have seen it take place firsthand in Kansas.” 

Health Connect South’s mission is to “break down the silos in health, gather the top health leaders from these silos, and create collaborations and partnerships to advance health. The event is expected to draw more than 500 health care leaders from across the region and beyond. Go towww.healthconnectsouth.com/event/health-connect-south-2018/ for registration and other details.   

The MAG panel is scheduled to take place from 10:20 a.m. to 11 a.m. 

The event will also feature a talk by MAG member and American Medical Association (AMA) President-elect Patrice Harris, M.D., M.A., who will give an update on AMA’s efforts to combat opioid misuse – which will take place immediately after the MAG panel.