Idea submitted by: Norman Sondheimer
Online tools and processes that patients can employ to improve the accuracy of their electronic health records. Patient portals are enabling easy access to one’s record. At the same time, patients are discovering errors of various types in these records. These errors include simple demographic data, out of date medication lists, incomplete medication allergies, inaccurate medical histories, missing laboratory tests and more. Without attention, the quality of data is certain to lead to patient disengagement as trust deteriorates.
Current portals, at best, allow patients to edit their basic demographic data and provide secure emails to their physician. Our idea is for the development of online tools and processes based on structured online forms like those used to edit demographic data and similar to those used by ecommerce companies for consumers to report problems. These forms can be less intimidating to patients and employed more conveniently than email. They will need to be matched by tools on the physician’s side to efficiently process the input.
Tools like these will be introduced in the developed world and moved throughout the world as patient access to health records expands. Success can be measured not just in the quality of data in patients’ medical records but by their engagement in their own healthcare.