News Release

Cisco and Electronic Health Network Build Medical Data Exchange Program - Designed to Connect Primary Care Physicians, Specialists and Patients Across South Carolina

Program Eases Transfer of Critical Patient Data and Advances Quality of Care for Palmetto Primary Care Physicians
Jun 03, 2010

COLUMBIA, S.C., and SAN JOSE, Calif., June 3, 2010 – Cisco today announced that its Medical Data Exchange Solution (MDES) has been selected for deployment across 22 locations in South Carolina by Electronic Health Network, a leader in patient health education and wellness applications. Palmetto Primary Care Physicians will use Cisco® MDES as the platform for Electronic Health Network's electronic health record and personal health record solutions to create a medical information exchange among 60 general practitioners and 137 specialist physicians. Physicians served by this program span a wide range of specialist areas, including wound care, dermatology and psychiatry, and an estimated 250,000 patients are expected to benefit from the data exchange program.

Cisco and Tiani-Spirit developed Cisco MDES to meet the growing global demand for medical data exchange and improve the quality of patient care across multiple specialty fields. The demands for medical data exchange services and electronic health records continue to expand as pressures to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of patient care increases. To alleviate manual processes that are both expensive and unable to scale, Cisco MDES incorporates patient indexing and image and document exchange functions into the network, offering a highly secure, efficient and cost-effective means to exchange and view patient medical information, regardless of the provider's location or information technology system. Electronic Health Network's application and integration services, along with the Cisco MDES, produce a comprehensive and robust multiple application secured health, or MASH, iNetwork information network.

Electronic Health Network's healthcare platform uses Cisco MDES to deliver fully integrated health information exchange services, including patient record indexing, document and image exchange, and access and security. Palmetto Primary Care Physicians will employ Electronic Health Network services to achieve PCMH / NCQA Level 3 requirements for their Patient Centered Medical Home program, which facilitates health information and data exchange among physicians, patients and their families to enable appropriate care and health management. Electronic Health Network's deployment of the MDES will help Palmetto Primary Care Physicians to meet "meaningful use" criteria under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.


  • Cisco MDES features capabilities to exchange both records and images from a single scalable platform. Healthcare providers from multiple institutions can quickly and easily access and review a patient's medical data gathered by different applications, locations and exchanges via a hierarchical patient indexing and record locator service based on Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) frameworks.
  • With Cisco MDES and Electronic Health Network, Palmetto Primary Care Physicians will have a platform from which they can access a patient-centric view of care aggregated from disparate sources to provide care to patients in a safe, efficient and cost-effective manner. This view eliminates the costly manual transport of images and records, reduces additional tests and procedures, and lowers the associated costs of these inefficiencies.
  • The Palmetto Primary Care Physicians group plans to use Cisco MDES to connect its 250,000 patients, physicians and specialists. Electronic Health Network and Cisco MDES will serve as critical components to the physicians' ability to deliver high-quality care.
  • While images are becoming more pervasive in the clinical setting and allow patients to be more involved in their personal health, they are also the most costly data to exchange between care locations. Cisco MDES provides the ability to exchange images at both a clinical review and diagnostic-quality level, offering the opportunity to create a vendor-neutral image archive and avoid costly image data migrations. This allows Palmetto Primary Care Physicians to reduce costs and time associated with using images in care processes.
  • As a leader in IHE infrastructure framework compliance, Cisco MDES offers a proven standards-based solution for simple access to patient data exchange, eliminating most risk or support issues associated with proprietary solutions. Healthcare organizations will benefit as they will not be required to log in to multiple systems or support proprietary and direct interfaces.
  • Cisco MDES offers a federated data architecture with optimized search algorithms for records and images, reducing network traffic for more efficient data queries and access. The architecture eliminates the need for large centralized data storage environments and reduces the associated costs, making it easier to scale the solution as the need or number of serviced facilities grows.
  • The Cisco MDES integrates the Cisco Unified Computing SystemTM, the Cisco Application Extension Platform and the Cisco Integrated Services Router with Tiani-Spirit's SpiritEHR management software to deliver interoperability transactions as a service from the network. 

Supporting Quotes:

  • Charles Williams, president and chief executive officer, Electronic Health Network
  • "Electronic Health Network is excited to team up with Cisco and assist physicians in building a stronger health IT infrastructure. By making privacy the top priority in exchanging user-friendly personal health records, we can provide individuals with the proper tools required to better manage their health."

  • Dr. Kirt Caton, general practitioner and lead health care provider, Palmetto Primary Care Physicians
  • "Based on the concept of forming a team-based approach and utilizing technology to bridge the gap, Electronic Health Network and Cisco have developed an effective solution that will afford Palmetto Primary Care Physicians the opportunity to provide patients with fast, highly secure access to their health records. In addition, Cisco MDES will allow our providers to effectively communicate with our patients and exchange information with other physicians in the network."

  • Hal Gilreath, global lead, Medical Data Exchange Solutions, Cisco Global Healthcare Solutions
  • "Cisco and Electronic Health Network are enabling providers in the South Carolina region to have access to the information they need to deliver high-quality care. Our experience from MDES implementations in other countries has allowed us to deliver a high-value health information exchange solution to the market. Cisco believes the provider-centric business model for Electronic Health Network, based on delivering industry standards interoperability as a network service, will provide a sustainable model for U.S. health information exchanges."

Supporting Resources:

About Electronic Health Network

Electronic Health Network is a privately held company based in Charleston, South Carolina. Its bundled solution consists of a Health Information Exchange, Electronic Health Record, Personal Health Record, Health and Wellness Tools in a secured HIPAA compliant environment, while protecting the privacy of physicians and patients. EHN scalable solutions can be implemented throughout the United States and globally. For more information visit:

About Palmetto Primary Care Physicians

Palmetto Primary Care Physicians is an independently owned physician group practice located in several cities throughout South Carolina. PPCP has been delivering an elite level of quality care since 1997 and has been using a fully implemented Electronic Medical Record system since 2000. For more information please visit: