PHRs: If You Build It, They Will Come

The termination of Google Health has stirred up the PHR/PHP community, making Personal Health Record companies around the world question the viability of a product that not even the tech-magnate Google was able to validate. Some experts and tech-savvy writers blamed the lack of social interaction, a lack in provider interest and, lets face it, a lack in consumer interest. Additionally, Google Health took an over-simplified approach to health records. All you could do is store data digitally, without the ability to analyze and interpret. So, in a market where the concept hasn’t specifically been widely validated, does it make sense to take a risk and build PHR/PHP systems with the assumption that users will eventually flock to the service? I choose yes, and below I try to explain why PHR vendors will in an ever-changing market.  Continue reading…

Is a Universal Health Record (UHR) Possible?

With the rise of Electronic Health Record (EHR) vendors comes the increased availability of Personal Health Records (PHRs) and patient portals. If Meaningful Use continues erring on the patient side (as it has in Stage II), by the end of it all (hopefully 2021), every person in the United States should at least have the option to register for a patient portal with their provider. The hope for patient portals is strong and the dream is big. ePatients from around the nation tout PHRs and patient portals that are fully integrated with services like WebMD, Medline+ and the like. In this instance, information between systems needs to be free-flowing and multi-directional. Yet with so many health IT vendors out there (EHR vendors, PHR vendors, HIE vendors, health insurance exchanges, community information exchanges… and the list goes on), can a universal health record ever be attained? Continue reading…

CMS backs patients in MU Stage 2 requirements

If you weren’t fortunate enough to attend this year’s HIMSS12 conference (don’t worry…I wasn’t either), you may have missed some important announcements about new requirements and new time lines for Stage 2 Meaningful Use. Published in a proposal on the Federal Register website (you can access it here), these new requirements seem to begin involving the patient as a key contributor to the health care process. Some quick facts of Stage 2:

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The Millennial Patient

I’m an “eighties baby” and, as such, I’m a millennial. I’m the internet child….born with a cell phone in one hand, an iPad in another, and a laptop in my lap. I no longer subscribe to letters because email is instant, and I don’t carry cash because its “safer” to use a debit card. In the age of hyperspeed, however, I still carry around an insurance card that grants me access to see a doctor, manually request my appointment notes, individually call to get lab results and patiently wait while a nurse fills out my patient history section of the chart.

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