Nearly all hospital patients can view information from their electronic health record online, according to new data released by the American Hospital Association.

The AHA Annual Survey Information Technology Supplement for community hospitals collected between November 2016 and April 2017 finds that 93 percent of hospitals and health systems enable patients to view information from their EHR online, up from only 27 percent in 2012.

In addition, 84 percent of hospitals and health systems enable patients to download information from their health record, compared with only 16 percent in 2012. And, 83 percent of these medical facilities enable patients to designate a caregiver to access health information on the patient’s behalf, a slight increase from 2015, the first year the question was included in the AHA survey.

Further, 73 percent of hospitals and health systems give patients the ability to electronically transmit summaries of care to a third party—a significant increase from only 13 percent in 2013, when the question was first asked.

And, 79 percent of these provider organizations enable patients to electronically request an amendment to update or otherwise change their health record—up from 32 percent in 2012—while 39 percent of hospitals and health systems enable patients to submit patient-generated health data (PGHD) to their health records, up from 8 percent in 2012.

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“The results from AHA’s Annual Survey and IT Supplement show that hospitals and health systems are enhancing the sophistication of their health IT systems in ways that engage patients in their healthcare,” concludes the industry group. “This results in improving patient access and interaction with their health data, and facilitating the delivery of health care services.”

Nonetheless, the AHA survey reveals that more large hospitals than small hospitals reported that they give patients the ability to interact with their health record. For instance, 80 percent of large hospitals enable patients to electronically transmit summaries of care to a third party, such as a specialist physician after a referral, compared with 67 percent of small hospitals.

In addition, 88 percent of large hospitals enable patients to electronically request an amendment to update or otherwise change their health record versus 74 percent of small hospitals. Further, 53 percent of large hospitals enable patients to submit PGHD to their health records, compared with 30 percent of small hospitals.

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