ONC: More patients are downloading their medical records and using portals

A brief out this month from the U.S. Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT found an increase in patient portal access and online medical record download rates over the past few years.  

In 2020, the agency said, about six in 10 individuals throughout the country were offered access to their patient portal, and nearly 40 percent accessed their record at least once.  

About a third of patient portal users downloaded their online medical record in 2020, nearly double the proportion of 2017.  

“Making it easier for individuals to access and use their electronic health information is a national priority,” wrote agency representatives in the brief.   

WHY IT MATTERS  

As ONC notes, these data points are from the Health Information National Trends Survey, which was fielded from January through April 2020.

In other words, the statistics include patient portal use before the COVID-19 pandemic – and before the final rule implementing key patient access provisions of the 21st Century Cures Act.

Still, many patients have clearly displayed a hunger for their health information. The four in 10 individuals who accessed a patient portal in 2020 represents a 13 percentage point increase from 2014.   

The vast majority (86%) did so in order to view test results – a proportion that has remained steady over the past four years.   

About one in five transmitted their data to an outside party.  

And many are choosing to get their records on the go: Almost 40% accessed their health data using a smartphone app in 2020.  

More patients are also using their portals to communicate with providers: Roughly six in 10 did so in 2020, a 10 percentage point increase from 2017.  

More than half viewed clinical notes written by their provider – and in 2019, about 10% requested a correction of inaccurate portal information. (The rate for 2020 was not available.)  

The majority of patients who did not access their portals said they preferred to speak with their healthcare providers directly.   

Other reasons included not seeing a need to access their medical records, difficulties logging in, privacy concerns, computer discomfort and a lack of website access.  

On the other hand, individuals encouraged by their healthcare provider to use their patient portal did so at higher rates compared to those not encouraged.  

“This illustrates the influence providers have with respect to educating patients about the benefits of having access and the value proposition for doing so,” wrote ONC analysts.  

THE LARGER TREND  

Studies have shown that patient portals can help individuals enhance their knowledge about their own medical status and care.

At the same time, however, hurdles to access exist. Some research shows that patients with lower incomes, Black patients, older patients and patients whose primary insurance is Medicaid are less likely to use portals. 

ON THE RECORD  

“The ONC Cures Act Final Rule seeks to make health information from electronic health records more easily accessible to patients through secure, standards-based APIs that can be leveraged to create applications that can help patients manage their health information, said analysts.  

“Ultimately, ONC hopes these provisions will enable patients to more easily access and use their health information across patient portals offered by different healthcare providers,” they continued. “Examining how these trends evolve over time will provide insight regarding the extent to which this vision is realized.”

Kat Jercich is senior editor of Healthcare IT News.
Twitter: @kjercich
Email: [email protected]
Healthcare IT News is a HIMSS Media publication.

Note: This article have been indexed to our site. We do not claim ownership or copyright of any of the content above. To see the article at original source Click Here

Related Posts
Whole-Person Care Can Make Us Better Healers thumbnail

Whole-Person Care Can Make Us Better Healers

My patient at a pain clinic on a military base in Virginia carried the deep wounds of war on his face. Not physical scars, but a sallow, slack complexion and a hollow-eyed look of exhaustion and defeat. A veteran of the war in Afghanistan, he had long been suffering from anxiety, depression, and other complications
Read More
Your Muscle Mass Could Help You Fight Covid Faster thumbnail

Your Muscle Mass Could Help You Fight Covid Faster

ImagesbyTristaGetty Images Your gains could lead to a better prognosis as far as fighting Covid-19, according to a new study. Looking at 196 patients, split between male and female participants, a study published in the Journal of Cachexia, Sarcopenia and Muscle this month revealed that those with greater muscle mass and muscle strength had shorter…
Read More
Missing youth, 13, last seen at Ottawa airport, police say thumbnail

Missing youth, 13, last seen at Ottawa airport, police say

Published Apr 15, 2023  •  Last updated Apr 16, 2023  •  < 1 minute read Files: Ottawa Police headquarters Photo by Tony Caldwell /Postmedia The Ottawa Police Service said Friday that a 13-year-old youth, missing since Saturday, has been found safe. Why have cartoon-like statues of pandas, bunnies and bears appeared in Ottawa's Chinatown? Environment
Read More
[장석주의인문정원] 집은 봉오리다 thumbnail

[장석주의인문정원] 집은 봉오리다

우리의 삶을 보듬고 키우며 살아온 곳기쁨과 웃음 가득한 꽃으로 피어나리 우리는 집이란 장소에 붙박이 거주자로 닻을 내린다. 공기, 빛, 공간, 시간을 아우르는 집에서 삶의 모든 찰나들이 피어난다. 집이 기쁨을 주지 않는다면, 그 삶은 불행할 것이다. 창문을 열어 아침 공기를 들이마시고, 창밖에 선 산수유나무가 피운 노란 꽃을 기뻐하며, 낮에 하얀 빨래와 어린것의 운동화가 마르는 기적에 감탄한다.…
Read More
Index Of News
Consider making some contribution to keep us going. We are donation based team who works to bring the best content to the readers. Every donation matters.
Donate Now

Subscription Form

Liking our Index Of News so far? Would you like to subscribe to receive news updates daily?

Total
0
Share