Personal Health Records
The Institute of Medicine's 2001 landmark book, Crossing the quality Chasm, delineated 10 "design rules" for improving [health] care. The success of six of these 10 "rules" depends directly on patients' involvement in their care. Recognizing the importance of having relevant information available to patients for management of their medical conditions, David Brailer, national coordinator for health information technology in the Department of Health and Human Services, has made personal health records a cornerstone in national strategy for health information technology.
KingCareSM members now have access to their own Personal Health Record, or PHR, through Aetna Navigator.
Group Health members now have access to their own Personal Health Record, or PHR, through My Group Health.
For more information on how to create a Personal Health Record through Aetna and Group Health follow these instructions:
- Go to www.myaetna.com
- Log into Aenta Navigator as a returning user or first time user.
- Under “Health Management” go to “View your Personal Health Record”. When you go into your Personal Health Record, some of your medical history might already be included. It’s easy to enter more information that will create a detailed picture of your overall health.
- Once you have created a PHR, you can get health alerts sent to your e-mail account. No health information will be shared in the e-mail. You will be prompted to visit Aetna Navigator and click on “You have Alerts in your Personal Health Record.” Alerts would include things like age and gender appropriate preventive screenings you are eligible for, but have not yet had.
- Employees who have an Aetna PHR will be able to securely transfer information to a secure Microsoft HealthVault account, where it can be stored for future use in another PHR. The change will ensure continuous access your health information.
Group Health Members:
- Go to www.mygrouphealth.com
- Log in as a returning user or click “register now” to register.
- Group Health has an online shared medical record that is integrated with the doctor’s notes so you can see your test results, recommendations from your doctors and use tools to keep track of your cholesterol, blood pressure, weight and height
Personal Health Records (PHRs) offer a number of potential benefits to patients, their doctors and the health care system. These include:
- Empowerment of patients. PHRs let patients verify the information in their medical record and monitor health data about themselves (very useful in chronic disease management). PHRs also provide scheduling reminders for health maintenance services.
- Improved patient-provider relationships. PHRs improve communication between patients and doctors, allow documentation of interactions with patients and convey timely explanations of test results.
- Increased patient safety. PHRs provide drug alerts, help identify missed procedures and services, and get important test results to patients rapidly. PHRs also give patients immediate access to updated care plans.
- Improved quality of care. PHRs enable continuous, comprehensive care with better coordination between patients, doctors and other providers.
- More efficient delivery of care. PHRs help avoid duplicative testing and unnecessary services. They provide more efficient communication between patients and doctors (e.g., avoiding congested office phones).
- Better safeguards on health information privacy. By giving patients control of access to their records, PHRs offer more selectivity in sharing of personal health information. The PCASSO (patient-centered access to secure systems online) study at the University of California-San Diego suggests that PHRs are more secure than paper records.
- Bigger cost savings. Improved documentation brought about by PHRs can decrease malpractice costs. PHRs' ability to reduce duplicative tests and services is a factor here, too.