Health Information Exchange

Patients at Montage Health are automatically enrolled in a health information exchange (HIE) to help patients and care providers share health information electronically. HIEs make patient health data available to doctors no matter where a patient receives care.

HIEs improve the quality, safety, and cost-effectiveness of healthcare. Montage Health participates in two health information exchanges:

  • Epic’s Care Everywhere, which allows providers to request patient data from other treatment centers that participate with Care Everywhere’s interoperability for electronic medical record keeping.
  • Central Coast Health Connect, which connects different hospital systems, medical practices, and health care organizations in Monterey County.

Doctors and health care personnel are permitted to use and share your health information through HIEs for HIPAA-permitted purposes only. This means that your electronic health information is made accessible to doctors and health care personnel who are providing you with medical treatment and care coordination.

How does information exchange work?

Traditionally, you or a physician's office would request your patient record using telephone, facsimile, or mail, then wait for the request to be processed and the records sent. With HIEs, records are shared electronically and immediately.

Note: HIEs only store your identifying information, and some markers about where you have received care; they do not store clinical information about you. In other words, they are merely a means of exchanging information. Your electronic health information is stored within each treating provider’s secure electronic medical record system.

What information is exchanged?

Patient health information includes most of the information in your electronic health records, such as your medical history, allergies, medications, and lab results.

Information that is not shared or available through HIEs, or which would require a signed patient authorization for release of information, includes behavioral health and substance abuse treatment services.

Can I opt out of information exchange?

Yes. To notify Montage Health of your decision to opt out of our HIEs, please submit your request in writing stating your name, date of birth, address, and medical record number (if available) with a statement saying that you wish to opt out. Send the request to the Risk Management and Privacy office via email to privacyoffice@montagehealth.org. If you have questions, please contact Risk Management and Compliance at (831) 622-2620.

Opting out prevents your personal health information from being shared, with two exceptions:

  1. The opt out does not apply when the disclosure is made to public health authorities and the purpose of the disclosure is permitted by either HIPAA or applicable California law.
  2. Your information may also be disclosed to facilitate emergency medical treatment.