Press Releases

Official press releases from Missouri Health Connection

MHC and ILHIE Lead the Nation in Cross-State Connectivity

Thursday, January 03, 2013

Missouri and Illinois State Health Information Networks Now Connected to Each Other via Direct Secured Messaging

                COLUMBIA, Mo. – Missouri Health Connection (MHC) and the Illinois Health Information Exchange (ILHIE) today announced they are among the first in the nation to exchange Direct secure messages across state lines.  This landmark announcement comes after the two networks successfully exchanged test messages.

                 “By connecting with our border states, Missouri Health Connection will help ensure improved care for patients who cross state lines for medical care,” said Mary Kasal, President & CEO of Missouri Health Connection.  “We’re excited to be connected to Illinois and look forward to more collaboration in the days ahead.”

                 “This is an important achievement to the benefit of patients in both states. It is a milestone for both ILHIE and MHC and we’re happy to be among the first in the nation to implement a solution that allows providers to connect across state borders and communicate in a HIPAA compliant, secure environment” said Raul Recarey, Executive Director of the ILHIE Authority. “Our collaboration as neighboring states will help providers better communicate with one another to better coordinate patient care, regardless of state borders.”

                 The Direct project was launched in March 2010 as a part of the Nationwide Health Information Network.  With Direct Secured Messaging, care providers can send and receive authenticated, encrypted health care information such as lab results, clinical notes and patient care summaries through a secure electronic mailbox system to and from trusted recipients over the Internet.  By connecting Missouri’s and Illinois’ Direct Secured Messaging health information service providers (HISPs), providers can now eliminate faxing multiple pages across state borders and instead use an easy, quick and secure Direct secured email message.

                 Missouri Health Connection is the state-designated entity to implement Missouri’s statewide health information network.  MHC’s early adopters include BJC HealthCare, one of the largest nonprofit health care organizations in the U.S.; Mercy with 31 acute care hospitals and 1,700 integrated physicians in the Midwest; and SSM Health Care, with 17 hospitals and the first healthcare winner of the Malcolm Baldrige Award, who, together, provide almost 40% of inpatient care in Missouri. These organizations, along with Burrell Behavioral Health, a provider of behavioral health services since 1977 and Nevada Medical Clinic, a rural multi- specialty clinic, support thousands of physicians and caregivers who can now use Direct Secured Messaging to provide better healthcare to Missourians.

 For more information, visit

 For more information about the ILHIE, visit, or visit for information specific to ILHIE Direct Secure Messaging.


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