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The Right Balance –Technology and Patient Care. (2017,
September 27). Retrieved January 25, 2018, from

Tang, P. C., Ash, J. S., Bates, D. W., Overhage, J. M., &
Sands, D. Z. (2006). Personal Health Records: Definitions, Benefits, and
Strategies for Overcoming Barriers to Adoption. Retrieved January 22, 2018,

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Informatics: Electronic Personal Health Records: Nursing’s
Role. (2017). Retrieved January 22, 2018, from








Personal health records are becoming
more and more popular with the rise in technology. Advances in technology are making
it possible for patients to stay involved in their own healthcare. PHRs are
allowing patients to record, track, and share health and health related
information in order to help them personally manage their health and
healthcare. PHRs may also enhance doctor/patient interactions and improve the
overall health and outcome of the patient. There are many different PHRs to
choose from, which offers the patient many options to find and choose the best
one to meet their needs. As with any system, there are benefits as well as
downfalls. By utilizing the PHR, patients can maintain a healthy lifestyle by helping
to decrease their risk of delayed care or complications due to lack of
involvement in their personal care. PHR systems have the potential to transform
the healthcare system and assist providers in delivering a higher level of care
to their patients.


Personally, I feel that PHRs are
wonderful. My mother has Spastic Paraplegia, and she has been confined to a
wheelchair for almost 10 years now. She not only has routine visits to her PMD,
but also monthly appointments with her neurological specialist. She keeps a
very accurate, and up to date PHR. She is linked in with her primary doctor as
well as her neurologist. This allows for her health information to be shared
amongst all of those involved in her care. Due to my mother being confined to a
wheelchair, the PHR makes it easy for my mother to access her lab and test
results without having to make an extra trip to the doctor.  It also provides convenience for my brother
and I, being that we are her primary caregivers. One of the disadvantages that
we have encountered stems from my mother’s lack of knowledge in technology. It
took her a while to learn and become comfortable with the system. Lack of
knowledge in technology is a major issue with the older generation. This is one
of the biggest downfalls related to elderly patients and PHRs. Design of a PHR
is important for this reason. PHRs should be easy to use and self-explanatory
to ensure that we are making it easily accessible for people of all ages and
generations. Overall, I think that the PHR is a wonderful tool, and if used
properly, PHRs can have a major impact on healthcare.

Personal Experience

Information entered by patients could
include diagnoses, medications, allergies, and test results. Once entered,
Google Health uses the information to provide the user with a combined health
record, information on conditions, and possible interactions between drugs,
conditions, and allergies (

Health is one example of a personal health record. Google health is a personal health record introduced by Google in
2008. Google Health allows Google users to input their health
records, either manually or by logging into their accounts at
partnered health services providers into the Google Health system, thus incorporating
separate health records into one main Google Health profile.

PHRs allow patients to have access to specific portions of their health care
records that are maintained by their health care providers or insurance
company. Institution PHRs may include test results, the ability to refill a
prescription or the ability to schedule an appointment. Although some
institution PHRs allow patients to enter their own information to the record,
most do not. With self-maintained PHRs, patients are responsible for entering
their own health information. The responsibility of maintaining these records
lies solely with the individual. The
problems connected to self-created records include the need for patients to gain,
remember, and enter this information, and their need to comprehend the
information enough to do this correctly. Self-maintained PHRs are usually a
stand-alone application that does not connect with any other system. In some
cases, however, “PHR functionality can be provided by allowing patients to view
their own health information that is stored in their health care providers EHR
and allow the patient to request appointment and prescription renewals and
provide a communication channel to clinicians” (Tang, 2006).  This type of linked record combines the
patient maintained with the institutional model and adds more functionality.
Patients can enter information or information can be uploaded from other
sources, such as, health care providers, pharmacies and even in-home BP
monitoring devices (Informatics: Electronic
Personal Health Records: Nursing’s Role, 2017).

There are three main
types of PHRs: the institution-centered PHR, the self-maintained PHR and the
linked record.

Example of Personal Health Records

personal health record (PHR) is an application through which an individual can
access, manage and share his or her health information, in a private, secure,
and confidential environment. A PHR is managed by the patients, and can include
information from a variety of sources, including health care providers.
Patients can securely store and monitor their health information including
diet, contact information, diagnosis, past and present medications, and allergy
lists. Originally, PHRs were designed to allow patients to view their own, personal
medical records. The goal of PHR has now includes the ability to not only view one’s
personal medical record but also to provide the services and tools that make
the PHR useful in promoting a complete and healthy lifestyle. These types of
systems are growing more popular with the rise of technology and are becoming
increasingly easier for the patient to stay involved in their own healthcare.

Health Records









361: RN Information Systems in Healthcare

College of Nursing


Health Records










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