Introducing, the Virginia Health Innovation Network

RICHMOND – 06-06-13 — Let the innovation begin.  The new Virginia Health Innovation Network,, was officially launched today at an event attended by leaders from the business, health care, medical, pharmaceutical and government communities.  The Innovation Network was developed by the Virginia Center for Health Innovation to spur the development of new strategies to address health care costs and quality and to promote “cross fertilization” and sharing of ideas through a specialized social networking platform.

“The Innovation Network addresses one of our most immediate unmet needs and takes Virginia into a whole new world of cooperative, rather than competitive, information gathering and sharing,” said Virginia’s Secretary of Health and Human Resources, Dr. William A. Hazel, Jr..

Thanks to a unique embedded research tool, INNO360, that goes well beyond a traditional web-based search, members can mine the library of innovations housed within the Innovation Network as well as search for relevant innovations and resources outside the Network’s walls.

The social networking design of the Innovation Network enables the personal connections available through a LinkedIn or Facebook, but with a focus on information sharing related to health, health care, and wellness.  Within the Innovation Network, members can join “communities” specific to a variety of health innovation topics of interest. These communities offer a forum where members share relevant innovations, discuss successes or stumbling blocks, poll community members, and connect with other members for in-person collaboration.

“The Innovation Network speeds up information gathering, boosts efficiencies, and breaks down barriers between those who normally don’t work together,” said Anna McKean, EVP for Health Diagnostic Laboratories.  “It is simply a smarter, more logical approach. It is a waste of resources and time for multiple entities to research the same topics when, instead, they could get a far broader and deeper understanding more quickly and efficiently through a shared platform.”

To appeal to and unite the various stakeholders, the Innovation Network has established initial communities that correspond with core action strategies in the Virginia Heath Innovation Plan and the VCHI Innovation Portfolio. These include measuring employee health and productivity, advancing patient-centered medical homes, improving care transitions, and emphasizing value-based insurance design.

Sponsors of the Virginia Health Innovation Network include Aetna, CarilionClinic, HCA, Health Diagnostic Laboratory, Merck, Pfizer, PhRMA, Kaiser Permanente, LabCorp, Riverside Health System, and UnitedHealthcare Foundation.