Chronically Ill Patients May Be Missing Out on Personal Health Records

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Electronic personal health records, also known as patient portals, potentially can do a lot to improve patient care. Among other benefits, they allow people to access their medical information, make it easy to communicate with providers between appointments, and facilitate prescription refills and appointment scheduling.<br /><br />
But a new study finds that health care organizations that have a personal health record system in place aren’t promoting it to the patients who stand to benefit the most—those with chronic illnesses. Writing in the <em>Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, </em>former Commonwealth Fund Harkness Fellow Susan Wells, M.D., and colleagues say that providers are not likely to reap significant value from the tool if they do not actively promote it to the patients who need the most help in managing their health and health care. Read the summary