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SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF. (Oct. 17, 2011) – Brown & Toland Physicians announced today that it has received a grant of $1.7 million from Blue Shield of California to implement a local electronic health information exchange (HIE) that would connect to other health information exchanges.

Blue Shield announced that a total of 18 California hospitals, health systems, clinics and physician groups – including many serving underserved populations – will receive grants totaling nearly $20 million for their work to improve health care. The accountable care organization grants are part of Blue Shield’s 2 Percent Pledge, a commitment the company made last year to limit net income to two percent of revenue and return the difference to the community. Brown & Toland’s grant, at $1.7 million, is one of the highest in the state.

“Improving electronic communciations among physicians, to improve health care and reduce costs, is a passion of ours at Brown & Toland,” said Richard Fish, Brown & Toland’s Chief Executive Officer. “We have spent many years building an interoperable electronic health record for our physicians. Building additional interfaces with health exchanges will help us improve our goals of improving quality while reducing overall health care costs.”

Brown & Toland was one of the first independent physician associations (IPAs) in the nation to launch an interoperable electronic health record for its physicians in 2005. Today, more than 300 Brown & Toland physicians are using the EHR and Brown & Toland’s full network has access to more than 75 million clinical results, such as blood tests and lab results, online.

In addition to helping improve electronic communications among independent physicians, Brown & Toland also is exploring additional ACO initiatives and is participating in an ACO with Blue Shield and California Pacific Medical Center for more than 21,000 San Francisco City and County employees.

About Brown & Toland Physicians

Brown & Toland Physicians is an independent practice association (IPA) of more than 2,100 physicians serving more than 335,000 HMO and PPO patients across the San Francisco Bay Area. The group has earned numerous awards for quality and innovation over the years, and has been named a California Association of Physician Groups (CAPG) “Elite” group for five consecutive years. In August 2011, Brown & Toland announced an affiliation with Alta Bates Medical Group. For more information, visit

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