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LA County DMH launches behavioral health EHR

March 11, 2014
by Dennis Grantham, Editor-in-Chief
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System will enable care coordination by providing authorized patient records for 250,000 individuals

The Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health (LACDMH) announces the launch of its Integrated Behavioral Health Information System (IBHIS), a comprehensive behavioral health clinical, administrative, and financial information system developed in cooperation with Netsmart The system will be used by LACDMH to coordinate a range of behavioral health benefits for 250,000 individuals throughout the county, which is home to nearly 10 million people.

According to LACDMH Director Marvin Southard, D.S.W., the new system “will create new capabilities to quickly access and share information critical to the support and care of our clients and their families.”

The current, initial launch phase will be followed by a series of go-live events involving LACDMH operated clinics and contracted providers over the next several months. In that time, some 3,000 users and over 600 contracted providers will use IBHIS information to support care coordination through real-time access to authorized health record information.

IBHIS uses Netsmart’s myAvatar CareRecord as its foundation electronic health record (EHR). In turn, this record interfaces with the EHRs of contracted providers and other Los Angeles County information systems to improve overall care coordination. The system is hosted by the NetsmartPlexus Cloud secure hosting service in the company’s SSAE16-certified, ISO 27001/27002-compliant data center.

When fully deployed, LACDMH will manage approximately one-third of California MediCal (Medicaid) claims dollar volume using IBHIS.

“We’re pleased to play a key role in the development and launch of a system that will help transform the way LACDMH delivers behavioral health services to people in the nation’s largest county,” said Netsmart CEO Michael Valentine.

Netsmart is a technology partner for 18 counties in California. It recently received the Premier Partner of the Year award from the National Association of Counties (NACo) for its efforts to empower counties, county employees and communities through public-private solutions and relationships.