Is the Industry Ready to Get Personal?

There are ways around the medical staff privilege limitations of a provider-controlled patient portal. At UPMC, for example, patients can grant proxy access to their HealthTrak PHR, says Martich the CMIO. "They could grant it to family members or to other physicians," he says. UPMC is also in the early stages of enabling patients to enter their own data to their PHR. Right now, patients can send data directly to their physicians via the secure messaging system and ask them to add the new data, Martich says. This coming summer, patients will be given the ability to update their charts directly, but any changes must be approved by the physician. "It is a way to insure the quality of data is at a certain medical standard," the CMIO explains.

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