About the Massachusetts Health Information Highway
In October 2012, Massachusetts launched a statewide electronic health information exchange, the Massachusetts Health Information Highway or “the Mass HIway.”
The Mass HIway is a secure computer network that allows doctors’ offices, hospitals, laboratories, pharmacies, skilled nursing facilities, and other healthcare organizations to safely and easily transmit vital data electronically.
How the Mass HIway Helps You
The Mass HIway is designed to make sharing your health information safe and fast, so that doctors have important information about your health history and can provide better care for you and your family.
Here are some examples of how the Mass HIway network can help doctors provide better care:
- If you are in an accident or have a sudden illness and go to the emergency room, the hospital might not know your medical history. The emergency room doctor can use the Mass HIway to find out if you are allergic to any medicines or if you have other health problems.
- If you were discharged from the hospital and are going for a follow-up appointment, the hospital can use Mass HIway to send your doctor a note about your hospital stay. Then, you and your doctor could spend time talking about your follow-up care instead of paperwork.
- If you get tests done, the doctor can use the Mass HIway to send the results to other members of your healthcare team, like your specialist. This helps them coordinate your care. It can also save you time and money by reducing the need for repeat tests.
- If you have a chronic condition your health insurer case manager can use the Mass HIway to
communicate with your doctors to coordinate your care and help you stay healthy.
- If you see a new doctor, he or she can use the Mass HIway to locate other organizations where you have received care. Your new doctor can request your health information so they can treat you better.
How to Provide Your Consent to Participate
Your participation in the Mass HIway is voluntary. In order to use the Mass HIway for your care, Massachusetts state law requires that we receive your consent by signing a consent form.
When you come to Fenway Health for your next medical appointment, you will be offered a consent form by your doctor, nurse or patient services team.
We encourage our patients to take advantage of the Mass HIway but do not require you to provide your consent. If you do not consent, you will not be enrolled as a Mass HIway participant.