The National Association for Trusted Exchange (NATE) and Michigan Health Information Network Shared Services (MiHIN) have released a new video to educate consumers on their rights to access their own health information, and to encourage consumers to take control of their health using smart devices and simple applications to request, view and store their personal health details.
Despite significant efforts from the healthcare industry to improve methods to securely communicate protected patient health data, many consumers remain unaware of their rights and options to view and manage their personal health information. Access to health details can benefit patients in multiple ways, from making it easier to remember health history when filling out forms at a new doctor’s office to helping to care for a family member in need of assistance.
The new NATE/MiHIN video, viewable at http://tinyurl.com/bluebuttonvideo, was created as a brief introduction for consumers and healthcare providers. The video seeks to:
- Educate patients and doctors on patients’ rights and options to access their health information
- Teach patients how to get a Direct secure email address, which is necessary for secure transmission of health details online
- Encourage patients to talk with their doctors about accessing their information electronically
- Educate patients on applications enabled with the Blue Button Electronic Health Record Retrieval System for health data
- Encourage doctors to adopt Direct secure email solutions to share data with patients
- Urge electronic health record (EHR) vendors to provide Direct solutions to their customer providers, enable Blue Button and become part of the NATE Blue Button for Consumers (NBB4C) Trust Bundle
“Using our smart devices with a Blue Button-enabled application enables any of us to receive and share our personal health records using the same secure methods used by doctors today,” said Aaron Seib, NATE CEO. “These Blue Button-enabled applications can help patients make sure their information is accurate, make it easier for you to share your information with all of your doctors, and generally have it available whenever and where ever you need it.”
The tools depicted in the video are available now, but some doctors may not know how to help patients access and share information. The NATE/MiHIN video includes a link to a downloadable letter that patients can share with their doctors to better understand their rights and the options available for sharing health details electronically. Healthcare providers can also contact NATE for assistance in communicating with their EHR vendors.
“Patients have the right to use their information to manage their health and their family’s health,” said Jeff Livesay, Associate Director of MiHIN. “With the growing number of tools in the marketplace, it’s now easier than ever for consumers to manage their health. Our goal for this video is to start getting the message out that easy-to-use tools are available now and can be used today to give consumers full access to their health information, so they can use it anywhere, anytime they need it.”
For more information on how Blue Button-enabled applications and the NATE Blue Button for Consumers (NBB4C) Trust Bundle can help provide secure access to personal health information, visit http://nate-trust.org/bluebutton and http://nate-trust.org/nbb4c. To learn more about Blue Button and the government-sponsored Blue Button Initiative, visit http://www.healthit.gov/patients-families/your-health-data.