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Personal medical records and patient portals



If you are like most people, you have a number of health concerns and can visit several doctors and pharmacies. Keeping track can be a challenge. With a personal medical record you can collect and manage all this information in an easily accessible location.

What is a personal medical record?

A personal medical record is simply a collection of information about your health. If you have a record or folder of medical papers, you already have a basic medical record.

And you've probably come across the big drawback of paper files: you rarely have them with you when you need them. 1

9659005] Electronic Patient Record (PHR) addresses this issue by making your information accessible at all times via web-enabled devices such as computers, smartphones, and tablets.

What information is included in a PHR?

In general, your PHR must contain everything that will help you and your doctors in dealing with your health – starting with the basics:

  • Your doctor's name and telephone numbers
  • Allergies, including drug allergies
  • Your medication including Dosages
  • list and data on diseases and operations
  • chronic health problems such as hypertension
  • Living wants or advance instructions
  • family history
  • immunization history

You can also add information to do you want to stay healthy and

  • Blood pressure levels in the household
  • Exercise and nutritional habits
  • Health goals such as quitting smoking or losing weight

PHRs, EHRs and patient portals

PHRs are not the same as electronic ones Medical records (EHRs), also called electronic medical records (EMRs), s I own medical practices, hospitals or health insurance companies.

EHRs typically contain the same basic information you would enter in a PHR, such as date of birth, drug list, and drug allergies. However, EHRs contain more information because they are used by health care providers to store visitor's notes, test results, and more.

A PHR bound to an EHR is called a patient portal. In some, but not all, cases, you can use a patient portal to provide information to your record such as: For example, add blood pressure values ​​at home. If so, you may not want to create a separate, stand-alone PHR.

However, you might want to consider having some basic information at hand in an emergency, including pre-instructions that describe your health decisions, such as the use of life-sustaining machines.

You can use an app such as the Health App for iPhones, which includes Medical ID, which provides critical information about the lock screen for use by first-aiders in an emergency. Medical ID can display medical conditions, allergies, medications, blood type, and emergency contacts. You can also use it to indicate if you are registered as an organ donor.

Similar apps are also available for other smartphones. Or you could go into your wallet and keep a card in your wallet or wear a wristband with medical warnings.

What are the benefits of a PHR?

Having a PHR can literally be a lifesaver. In an emergency, you can quickly give first responders important information, such as: Illnesses you are being treated for, medications you are taking, drug allergies, and contact information for your doctor.

If you see multiple doctors and do not consume them In the same EHR system, a PHR is a great way to keep all your health information in one place.

With a PHR, you can also manage your health between visits. For example, with a PHR you can:

  • track and evaluate your health. Record and track your progress in achieving your health goals, such as: B. lowering your cholesterol level.
  • Make the most of doctor visits. [19659034] Be prepared with questions to your doctor and information you want to share with others, such as blood pressure measurements since your last visit.
  • Manage your health between visits. Upload data from home monitoring equipment (eg, blood) and analyze pressure cuff. Remember the instructions of your doctor from your last appointment.
  • Get neat. Track appointments, vaccinations and preventive services or check-ups such as mammograms. Indeed, one study found that when parents used personal health data for their children, the likelihood that children would perform their on-time check-ups in a timely manner was more frequent.

Are there any disadvantages with PHRs?

Creating a complete health record takes some time You must collect and enter all your health information. Only a minority of physicians, hospitals, pharmacies and insurance companies can electronically send information to a PHR that is not part of a patient portal.

In most cases, you must update your PHR manually each time you see the doctor, fill out a prescription, take a test, or go to the hospital.

Even if you are using a patient portal, you still need to review the added information. The electronic transmission of health data is not always perfect and mistakes can happen.

Is my information kept secret?

Perhaps the most common concerns about PHRs are privacy and security. To address these issues, reputable PHR systems follow industry best practices, such as publishing their privacy policy and monitoring by independent organizations. In addition, federal laws have been enacted to protect the safety of personal health information.

How do I start?

If your family doctor offers a patient portal, use it. The reception staff should tell you how to sign up for it. (If your doctor does not offer one, ask if there will be one more available in the future.) Then use the features. Most portals offer:

  • Event reminders
  • Medication list
  • Summaries, sometimes with related educational materials
  • Secure messages with your provider
  • Test scores

Updated: 2017-07-06

Release date : 2009-06-16


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