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Health Information Technology

Every time a patient visits a hospital, doctor's office, dentist, or other healthcare provider, information about that patient's health is recorded and saved to maintain an accurate record of his or her medical history. This information is often stored electronically, in an Electronic Health Record, or "EHR" for short.

To make sure all patients in the North Country receive high-quality care both locally and across the state, FDRHPO partners with the North Country Initiative (NCI) clinically-integrated network, a collaborative of regional clinical, behavioral, and social care organizations that, among other projects, work to maintain, optimize and advance the region's health IT infrastructure. 

To continue this work, FDRHPO began a collaboration with the Adirondack Health Institute (AHI) to form the North Country Telehealth Partnership — a unified effort to plan and implement telemedicine throughout their 12-county catchment area, covering northern and central New York. This collaboration has quickly become northern New York’s leading agency focused on increasing access to healthcare through the innovative use of telehealth and telemedicine technology.

FDRHPO & NCI also convene a Health Information Technology Committee that discusses health information technology initiatives and tracks national and developments in the field. 

Why is Health IT Important?

Though it is often overlooked because of its role "behind the scenes" of everyday healthcare, Health IT and infrastructure is the bedrock of our modern healthcare system. It is a pivotal tool in gathering, analyzing, and reporting clinical quality measures, which allows providers to determine how they can improve. Health IT can save time, money, and ultimately, lives!


In a complex system like our regional Health Information Exchange, interoperability is key. We want our healthcare providers to be able to communicate effectively and share information so they can coordinate the best possible care for North Country patients. 

To make this possible, FDRHPO has partnered with HealtheConnections, a Health Information Exchange based in Syracuse, New York. Through this partnership, our region's physicians, hospitals, public health departments, behavioral health providers, and other medical offices are able to securely share electronic health records (EHRs) - along with relevant images like MRIs, x-rays, mammograms, or CT scans - in no time at all. 

Through a unique partnership with the US Department of Defense and the Department of Veteran Affairs, our Health Information Exchange also extends to include the EHRs of Fort Drum Soldiers, their families, and veterans. This integration allows some of our nation's finest to receive seamless care throughout the North Country, both through the military health system and our community practices. 


Determined to stay at the forefront of Health IT, FDRHPO and its partner NCI uses technology to aggregate patient health information from a variety of sources - such as EHRs, insurance claims, and others - and analyze it to track and improve clinical outcomes while lowering costs. This endeavor supports our region's participation in value-based payment contracting and current and future practice transformation incentive programs. 

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