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My Favorite Smart Phone Healthcare Posts of 2012

Since it’s the end of 2012, I thought it would be fitting to put  the links to some of my favorite posts I wrote this last year. Did you have a favorite one? Or is there something you’d like me to talk about this next year? Happy New Year!

1. 5 Must-Have Medical Apps for Medical Students

Because this post appears to be one of the most popular of all-time here at Smart Phone Healthcare, it tops my list. I didn’t realize what a big demand there was for information on apps for medical students. I’m sure even more great apps have come out since I wrote this post, so look for an updated one in the near future.

2. My First (Actual) Experience With A Patient Portal

Over the past several months, I have learned a lot about healthcare and mHealth. During that time, I have heard and read lots of articles and information about patient portals. However, it wasn’t until just a month or so ago that I actually had the opportunity to use one myself. This post recounts that experience using the patient portal my son’s pediatrician’s office uses, powered by eClinical Works.

3. Phreesia Makes Going to the Doctor Easier

After visiting the urgent care a few weeks ago, I discovered how the office I went to was really implementing portable devices into their practice. I was so excited about the process, that I just had to write a post about it. I think that every doctor, emergency room, and urgent care center should use some thing like Phreesia.

4. New Friend Request . . . From the Family Doctor?

Just some of my thoughts about doctors and practices using social media to connect with patients. For some, it might be overstepping the patient/doctor boundaries, but I think it’s great to see doctors getting more involved with patients.

5. Does Access to the Internet at All Times Make Us Hypochondriacs?

Yes, yes it does. At least I think so. How many of us have looked up symptoms online, and convinced themselves that they have some kind of terrible disease? I’m guessing a large majority. Having constant access to the Internet through tablets and smart phones may just increase the number of people doing that.

6. Must Have Pregnancy Mobile Apps

This was my first post here on Smart Phone HC, so of course I had to put it on the list! I really enjoyed writing this post, mainly because pregnancy was something that was on my mind, since I had given birth only a few months before. I think that any woman (or sympathetic man) could really benefit from this post.

January 2, 2013 I Written By

Katie Clark is originally from Colorado and currently lives in Utah with her husband and son. She writes primarily for Smart Phone Health Care, but contributes to several Health Care Scene blogs, including EMR Thoughts, EMR and EHR, and EMR and HIPAA. She enjoys learning about Health IT and mHealth, and finding ways to improve her own health along the way.

My First (Actual) Experience With A Patient Portal

During my time of writing about mHealth, I have had the opportunity to discover many apps, patient portals, and PHRs that have been created. However, I haven’t been able to use them beyond my initial review, for the most part. Why? Because most of the physicians my family aren’t really into the whole mHealth trend. I mean, my OB/GYN doesn’t even have a website (granted, he’s about 70 years old, and very much set in his ways). I’ve been kind of disappointed by the lack of technology that my son’s pediatrician’s office has, however. Until recently. A few weeks ago, when we were visiting with one of the PAs in the office, I was absolutely thrilled to see him using a tablet as he talked with us. He quickly pulled up information about our past appointments, and it was neat to actually see this new “era” of medicine in work. Well, besides this, I hadn’t seen much else available.

However, today I heard that the office had launched a patient portal feature to their website. Well, you’d better believe I called the office right away and got set up on it. I wasn’t expecting much, especially because it is still very new, but I have to admit, I’m impressed so far.

It has all the features I look for — the ability to message staff, set up appointments, refill prescriptions, and view information from past appointments. The format of the website is also very impressive. Here are a few screenshots I took (note, I did take out some of the identifying details, so that’s why there are some big blank spaces at times):

This is the main page for the patient portal. As you can see, it’s powered by eClinicalWorks. The front page has some essentials, such a appointment reminders and a quick link to a PHR. On the left, there is an easy to use menu.

I really liked the clinical information section. Because we’ve forgotten to bring my son’s immunization card with us a few times, it isn’t totally updated. Instead of going through the hassle of going to the office to get it figured out, all of the information can be found easily, and I also can find out the names of different problems that had been identified in the past. This did cause me to worry a bit, as there were some issues cited that the doctor never told us concerning our son

And finally, here is the last section I wanted to highlight. I’m someone who loves to keep records, and it’s nice to be able to see the history of the our appointments in the past, and who they were with. There are about 6 or 7 different physicians at this practice, and it sometimes is hard to keep track of who we’ve seen. We were wanting to switch my son’s PCP to one that we saw when he was first born, and I found out who that was easily just by looking at this chart.

 

As you might have noticed on some of these pictures, there is a mobile app in the works for this medical practice, which I’m so excited about. In just the past few months, this doctor’s office has really stepped up their game — first an awesome Facebook page, next the physicians are using tablets, and now the patient portal.

To be honest, I’m not a big fan of calling people and talking on the phone, so the ability to do a lot of that (schedule appointments, request information, refill prescriptions) is very nice. And just as a side note, as I’ve looked through the portal tonight, I discovered a few errors in some of the information that the office had on our family (as in, they listed my son as the emergency contact…for himself. And no phone number was listed for our family,) that I wouldn’t have noticed otherwise.

Anyways, I just wanted to share a little bit of my excitement to see how doctors and physicians are starting to embrace the digital world, and realize that’s what patients want. Now if only I can get my OB to get on board, I’ll be a happy camper.

Does your doctor’s office offer a service like this? What do you like about it?

October 8, 2012 I Written By

Katie Clark is originally from Colorado and currently lives in Utah with her husband and son. She writes primarily for Smart Phone Health Care, but contributes to several Health Care Scene blogs, including EMR Thoughts, EMR and EHR, and EMR and HIPAA. She enjoys learning about Health IT and mHealth, and finding ways to improve her own health along the way.