Illinois Insurers Offer PHRs
October 31, 2006
Major health insurers - including two in Illinois - are developing personal health records, which can prove useful during an emergency or when patients change physicians, according to the Chicago Tribune.
UnitedHealthcare since 2005 has provided its one million Illinois members with access to a secure online personal health record system. UHC members can use the system to track data such as their blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, weight and sleep. They also can add information about sexually transmitted infections, mental health issues or substance abuse. Only UHC-contracted physicians with patients' consent can access PHRs, the Tribune reports.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, the state's largest insurer, more than two years ago launched its personal health manager, according to Stan Borg, the insurer's chief medical officer. Members can take a health risk assessment and can create a PHR that they can share with physicians. BCBS by early next year will provide physicians with a patient clinical summary based on claims information, which will alert physicians to potential gaps in care (Yabolonsky Stat, Chicago Tribune, 10/31).