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Website launches to promote health-care innovation

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An Internet-based network aimed at spurring innovation in Virginia health care will be launched officially on Thursday.

Virginia Health Innovation Network ( was created by the Virginia Center for Health Innovation to promote development of strategies addressing health-care quality and costs.

The website also has a social networking platform designed to promote collaboration and the sharing of ideas.

The official introduction of the network is scheduled to take place at the Virginia Chamber of Commerce’s annual health conference in Richmond.

“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,” Dr. William A. Hazel Jr., Virginia secretary of health and human resources, said in a statement.

A network research tool allows members to mine the a trove of information about health-care innovations in Virginia and elsewhere.

The social networking platform permits members to form connections in a fashion similar to LinkedIn or Facebook but with a focus on information on health, health care and wellness.

Users can join “communities” tied to a variety of health innovation topics. These communities are designed to offer an opportunities for sharing information, discussing successes or stumbling blocks, polling community members and connecting with others for collaboration on projects.

The Virginia Health Innovation Network has established initial communities that correspond with core strategies in the Virginia Heath Innovation Plan and the VCHI Innovation Portfolio.  These include measuring employee health and productivity, advancing patient-centered care, improving care transitions and emphasizing value-based insurance design.

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