Partners, get ready

Many of you may have heard about the Health Information Exchange Grant from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology that was awarded to EMSA last week.  I would like to make sure that EMS providers and hospitals are aware of the grant and work with your local EMS agencies as part in the design process for the +EMS component of the plan

In light of our ONC grant objectives, we are letting local EMS agencies, HIO, ambulance providers, and hospitals know that we will expect a “coalition” of committed partners to come forward with a plan for local implementation of the +EMS component as part of our upcoming funding opportunity.  For those areas that are interested, dialogue and work should begin NOW to position that local area to prepare and submit a response to our upcoming solicitation for local assistance funding.

We are anticipating that we will want to get various partners on board via contract by October.  As you can imagine, the actual timeframe may vary based upon our procurement rules.

For the +EMS component, some people are asking what should we do now?  Our general recommendations are as follows:

  • Have a commitment for HIE development for EMS personnel to be able to send, receive, find, and use electronic health information
  • Use a NEMSIS 3 compliant product
  • Build a system, or work with your existing vendor, that can implement the 4 California-required functionalities of SEARCH, ALERT, FILE, and RECONCILE (brief description attached)
  • Develop interconnections with HIOs, that will allow SEARCH (Query, Federated Model) function to return a C-CDA to allow pertinent information to be viewed “real-time” on the ePCR screen
  • Work with a LEMSA to coordinate with local HIO and ensure that connections with ambulance providers and hospitals are obtained in a “regional” area

EMSA staff is available to provide further clarifications and technical assistance.  Please let me know if you would like to further discuss. You can follow the HIE Blog here at

Grant Details

Name:             PULSE +EMS

Amount:          $2.75 million

Grant Period:  July 27, 2015 – July 26, 2017

Overall Goal:   EMSA will provide funding and technical assistance to support the ability of local entities to send, receive, find, and use electronic patient information. Also, this grant will develop technology, infrastructure, policies and agreements that enable interoperable, bidirectional HIE between multiple HIOs during a disaster, AND between emergency ambulance providers and hospitals via HIOs for daily EMS operations.

Milestones:     Adoption, Interoperability, Exchange


  • PULSE Connectivity and exchange between at least four existing HIOs/HIEs for use in a Disaster
  • PULSE web portal for Disaster Healthcare Volunteers for use in a Disaster
  • +EMS Connectivity and exchange between ePCR and EHR in at least two LEMSAs for use with day-to-day EMS activities
  • Two Statewide HIE in EMS Conferences
  • 20-member Statewide HIE in EMS Project Advisory Committee

Contact Information

EMSA Contacts:

Dan Smiley, Project Director (916) 431-3672

Jim Switzgable, Project Manager (916) 431-3739

June Iljana, Project Coordinator (916) 431-3723

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