Online Portals Enable Patients to Access Medical Records, Play a More Active Role in Managing Their Care
February 6, 2013 — Patients want to play an active role in managing their healthcare — and online access to medical records is an important first step. This concept is also a requirement in Stage 2 Meaningul Use requirements.
Houston Medical Imaging (HMI) operates a chain of three outpatient imaging centers in Houston, Texas. The company recently tested Carestream Health’s new MyVue patient portal, which equips patients with secure online access to their medical imaging exams and radiology reports. If patients choose to seek a second opinion, they can quickly and easily share these records with selected physicians or specialists.
“Patients used to be passive recipients of medical care. Now they are becoming consumers who are empowered to act on their own behalf,” said Randall Stenoien, M.D., Radiologist and CEO of Houston Medical Imaging. “Because this portal equips patients to manage their own imaging studies, we view it as an important service offering.”
The patient portal can be accessed from Web-enabled devices such as the iPad. It is also very easy to use, which is evidenced by the high engagement rate.
“During the first three months that we offered the patient portal, almost 1,500 patients — which is about 50 percent of our patients — logged onto their accounts to view imaging studies using MyVue,” said Stenoien. “Due to the portal’s ease of use and helpful online instructions, our IT department only received 47 phone calls. And most of those calls were for password resets or other issues not related to the usage of the patient portal.”
In addition to providing greater convenience for patients, being able to share imaging studies online also has the potential to reduce the need for duplicate imaging exams. The portal can also trim costs for healthcare providers by helping to eliminate the equipment, personnel and mailing costs related to both data output onto CD/DVDs and possibly reduce the need to input data from CDs/DVDs.
“This is one of those rare situations where an innovative new technology delivers the capabilities patients want while simultaneously reducing expenses. It delivers benefits to patients, their referring physicians and healthcare facilities,” said Stenoien.
The MyVue portal is currently in trade trial and is scheduled to be available in February or March 2013.
For more information on the latest digital medical imaging systems from Carestream Health please visitwww.carestream.com.