Studies report that Americans are receiving only half of the preventive care services they require, says the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. A new study says that this problem can be solved by new information technologies and offered a patient-centric Personal Health Record (PHR) to encourage preventive care. Incorporated into the patient’s electronic health records (EMR), the PHR offered patients one-to-one assistance on preventive care services.
The interactive PHR addressed 18 different clinical preventive services and was adopted by primary care practices successfully. The researchers included the receipt of immunizations, cholesterol tests, colonoscopy and more. Patients were asked to do a health risk assessment to fill in data which may not be in the medical record. To acquire wide range of preventive services that are user specific, the PHR provide users with customized profiles with reminders. Each patient got a customized profile and reminders to get the preventive services they needed and the explanations of the benefits (EOB).
Between 1.5 percent and 28.3 percent of patients across the 14 practices selected for the study used the PHR within 6 months. Patients reported that the system was easy to use and were happy to see their health-related information in one place. Furthermore, each practice was able to include the PHR into the patient visits. Preventive care providers used the PHRs to develop preventive care plans for patients and explain test results. In addition, the PHRs offered the providers information about overdue care and complete annual Medicare wellness visit requirements.
PHR and electronic health records (EHR) provide physicians with immediate access to their patients’ complete medical record during visits. They also help educate patients, provide prescriptions, observe patient progress, and complete other tasks. Medical transcription companies offer excellent documentation solutions for healthcare providers with feeds to EHR.