"New Jersey has been at the forefront of promoting the meaningful use of heath information technology and exchange to help improve health care outcomes for our citizens," said Governor Christie. "I am pleased to have an individual with Colleen's caliber of expertise to spearhead New Jersey's health information technology efforts."
Ms. Woods brings over 20 years of technology experience working for the State of New Jersey to the position. She most recently served as the Chief Information Officer for the New Jersey Department of Human Services and recently received the IT Hero award from the New Jersey Mental Health Association. She has a Masters degree from Rutgers University.
"It is an exciting time in the healthcare community, and I look forward to working with all of the stakeholders, both in the state and nationally, to improve the delivery and quality of healthcare," Ms. Woods said.
Nationally, health information technology is playing a critical role in achieving improved healthcare by reducing duplicative or unnecessary testing; strengthening disease management efforts; improving overall care coordination and reducing costs.
Recently, New Jersey was awarded $5 million in federal funds to support the State's Medicaid HIT Planning (SMHP) process that will implement an electronic health record (EHR) incentive program. In addition, the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) was awarded a federal grant of over $23 million to become a state designated Regional Extension Center (REC) to further promote HIT related training, innovation lab, awareness and education of the use of EHR technology.
New Jersey also is receiving $11.4 million in federal funds over the next four years to fund electronic health records projects that will create four regional Health Information Exchanges (HIEs) that will share information among health care providers around the state.
The Statewide Health Information Technology Coordinator will report directly to the Governor's Office.
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