Health Link to Present at HIMSS23

Posted on: January 23, 2023   |   Category: News Releases
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We are pleased to announce that SD Health Link in partnership with Avera Health and the College of Pharmacy and Allied Professions at South Dakota State University will be presenting at two different learning sessions at HIMSS23 Global Conference in Chicago.  Additionally our proposal with Avera Health has been selected to be featured as one of three sessions that are part of the HIMSS23 Behavioral Health Series!  The two sessions are:

Transforming Care with an HIE in the Behavioral Health Setting (April 20, 2023)

Avera Health in partnership with the South Dakota Health Link (South Dakota’s Health Information Exchange) have developed a collaboration with strategies to transform care delivery in the behavioral health care setting.  The collaboration has allowed the region’s leader  in behavioral health to effectively obtain critical patient information with a unique care delivery model to assess and treat mental health and substance use disorders. This care delivery model is a partnership between the county, city, and another healthcare system in the region, to provide 24/7 access to patients experiencing a mental health crisis or in need of substance abuse intervention. The collaboration has also allowed the healthcare system to retrospectively review data in the state of South Dakota to better understand how to stop suicides and opioid related deaths. Too often healthcare systems provide or implement intervention without the opportunity to evaluate outcomes. This collaboration has allowed the healthcare system to evaluate differences in demographics, risk factors versus protective factors, assessment, and treatment strategies to positively impact the fight against suicide and opioid related deaths.

  • Kevin DeWald – Executive Director (SD Health Link)
  • Matthew Stanley, DO – Vice President and Medical Director (Avera)
  • Amber Reints, PMHNP – (Avera)

State Health Information Exchange Partnerships with Pharmacy Organizations and Educators (April 21, 2023)

Community pharmacies have not traditionally been represented in Health Information Exchanges (HIEs) both as members submitting relevant patient information as well as accessing this information to improve care provided. Likewise, although there are requirements in accreditation standards on graduates’ abilities to utilize electronic forms of patient information, health professions academic programs have not traditionally incorporated HIEs into their curricula. South Dakota’s HIE, South Dakota Health Link (SDHL), was conceived in 2006 and has grown its network to include most hospitals and clinics in the state. SDHL partnered with a regional community pharmacy chain, Lewis Drug, and a health profession academic program, South Dakota State University College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions, in order to pilot integration of HIEs into community pharmacy and Doctor of Pharmacy curricula, respectively. The community pharmacy pilot integrated the HIE in clinical service workflow and demonstrated increases in pharmacist confidence providing services, productivity, and financial reimbursement. The academic pilot replaced ‘paper cases’ with use of a simulated electronic health record supported by a ‘sandbox’ version of the HIE for a simulated medication history interview activity. Assessment of documentation following the interview demonstrated similar student performance as previous years despite increased technological complexity.

  • Lisa Fox – Implementation Analyst (SD Health Link)
  • Alex Middendorf, Pharm.D. MBA – Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Practice (College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions South Dakota State University)

More information about HIMSS23 can be found at