Expert judges awarded top three designs for statewide website where New Yorkers will soon be able to access their healthcare records
New York, NY – The New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC) announced today the winners of its Design Challenge for the Patient Portal for New Yorkers. Mana Health placed first, iHealthNY second, and MyHealthProfile third and will be awarded $15,000, $7,500, and $2,500 respectively. View their products here.
The Patient Portal for New Yorkers project is to build a website, through which New Yorkers across the state will be able to access all of their medical records from their various healthcare providers safely and securely. To create the most innovative and user-friendly portal design, NYeC launched a Design Challenge earlier this year, asking designers to submit portal prototypes. Then in April, the general public was asked to vote on which design submissions they liked best. Thousands of New Yorkers cast their votes and selected the nine remaining finalists.
“One of the most important achievements of the Challenge is that it engaged New Yorkers in this crucial discussion,” said David Whitlinger, Executive Director at the New York eHealth Collaborative. “The portal is about making a patient’s data freely accessible to them so they can manage their own healthcare. It’s about bringing power to the people of New York.”
The finalist companies demonstrated their products to panels of expert judges at an event in New York City on April 30th and another in Buffalo on May 2nd and the final winners were chosen. Judges included healthcare providers, hospital leadership, public advocates, entrepreneurs, public officials, IT experts, and industry leaders. The engaged audience encompassed a broad spectrum—patient advocates, technology specialists, representatives from RHIOs, small practice doctors, media, and members of the general public—and participated during question and answer sessions.
NYeC works closely with both the New York State Department of Health and the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The Patient Portal for New Yorkers builds upon the successful Blue Button initiative developed by the Department of Veterans Affairs to allow veterans easy access to their healthcare data.
“The NYeC Design Challenge is proof that extraordinary things are possible when we leverage creative developers and designers and the preferences of end users,” said Rebecca Mitchell Coelius, MD, Medical Officer for Innovation at the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, and a judge on the Design Challenge panel. “It’s exciting to see New York take the federal Blue Button initiative to the next level through its use of the patient portal. Well-designed and functional access to personal health data, and support for its export to other applications, is a huge step forward for patients in New York State and a massive opportunity for entrepreneurs.”
NYeC will now begin building the portal and coordinate its function on top of the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY), a secure network for sharing clinical patient data across New York State via Regional Health Information Organizations. See the RFP here.
“As New York moves forward with innovative projects to better integrate health information and medical records into patient care, it is essential that patients have access to their healthcare records so they can be engaged in managing their health. This new portal will be user-friendly, secure, and easy to navigate, allowing New Yorkers to review and share their healthcare records and communicate with their healthcare providers. The Department values its partnership with NYeC, which is an essential part of the effort to accelerate health IT innovation,” said New York State Health Commissioner Nirav R. Shah, M.D., M.P.H.
On May 15th, NYeC will release a Request for Proposals to identify a company to work with on the portal development. Companies should visit nyehealth.org for RFP information.
The Patient Portal for New Yorkers will begin to be available to the public in 2014.
Key Features of the Portal Will Allow Patients To:
- Easily access their healthcare records whenever they want them. For example, to find out when they started taking a particular medication, when they had their last tetanus shot, or to view recent lab results.
- Share their records with providers—such as to get a second opinion on a diagnosis or share data from a specialist with their family doctor.
- Select and control who is allowed to have access to their medical history.
- Be more empowered in their healthcare management and better able to partner with doctors in their care.
About The New York eHealth Collaborative (NYeC): NYeC is a not-for-profit organization, working in partnership with the New York State Department of Health to improve healthcare for all New Yorkers through health information technology (health IT). Founded in 2006 by healthcare leaders, NYeC receives funding from state and federal grants to serve as the focal point for health IT in the State of New York. NYeC works to develop policies and standards, to assist healthcare providers in making the shift to electronic health records, and to coordinate the creation of the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY), a network to connect healthcare providers statewide. For more information about NYeC, visit www.nyehealth.org and @NYeHealth.
The Public Votes! Votes for Healthcare!
This Saturday we opened voting to the public, giving the people a chance to select the designs they like best for the Patient Portal for New Yorkers. Voting will be open until April 23rd, and we ask that you help us determine the interfaces you find the clearest, most straightforward and user-friendly.
The Patient Portal for New Yorkers will allow patients simple, secure online access to their personal health information, via the Statewide Health Information Network of New York (SHIN-NY). Currently, only providers can access this network, but this is about to change.
Similarly to the way online banking works, the patient portal will permit you to review the details of your own health records and medical history, empowering you to take charge of your health. As with secure online banking, your healthcare records are highly protected, and only available to be viewed by you, and the healthcare providers (or family members) to whom you grant consent.
“Consent” is the term used to describe giving formal access to someone to view your healthcare data. You can consent to allow a hospital access to your records, or just your primary care physician, family members, specialists, etc. You can add consents or revoke them at any time, via the patient portal website.
An additional security measure is built into the retrieval of your health records which exceeds the security of online banking: When you log on to the portal, you can see a list of every person who has accessed your records. This way, you have full control, not only of your records, but of who else has viewed them.
Benefits of EHRs
Electronic health records, or EHRs, are the computer-based equivalent of paper records. Rather than depending on paper charts to store patient information, EHRs are digitized, and can be accessed onscreen from a variety of locations.
There are many reasons why electronic health records have the advantage over paper records.
Accuracy: Sometimes, an incomplete record can be just as dangerous as no record at all. This is why it’s so important that a patient’s record be as complete as possible. EHRs allow for the most complete patient record possible, with all disparate information (such as lab and radiology test results, blood work, treatment plans, prescriptions, and allergies) to be consolidated and accessible.
Efficiency: When a new healthcare provider can easily access information from the referring physician, patients no longer need to rely on memory to fill out pages of detailed background information about their medical histories.
Coordinating care: Most people see more than one doctor to manage their health. Those dealing with chronic conditions often visit many. Providers communicating directly with each other while caring for a patient can make better informed decisions as to treatment.
Repeated procedures: From x-rays to blood work to MRIs, when a provider is unaware that test results already exist, or cannot access them easily, they often must repeat them. With electronic health records, providers can look up a patient’s most recent lab results, reducing unnecessary retesting, and saving a significant amount of time and money.
Your safety: In an emergency, a matter of seconds can save a life. Fast, remote access to a patient’s allergies, medical history, and possible drug interactions can make all the difference. See how health information exchange can help.
Access to your own records: With electronic records, it’s much easier for patients to view their own health records. NYeC is developing a Patient Portal for New Yorkers which will enable patients to securely view and update their health information and better take charge of their health.
“To (2)” Factor Authentication – or Not!
My heart goes out to those tiny electrons! Those tiny chaps have a tough living in the digital age, with all the racing around through cyberspace . . . and we are trying to make their lives tougher! On the SHIN-NY, billions will be traveling from one end of the state to another carrying patient data with them. So, in spite of our love for the electrons, the one thing we are trying to make sure is that the data that they carry on their shoulders travels within the boundaries of trust.
Watch: HIE, Making a Difference
Still skeptical about the benefits of HIE? You shouldn’t be. Produced by the Office of the National Coordinator, this video, featuring David Whitlinger of NYeC, and Bronx-based healthcare provider, Dr. Sumir Sahgal, shows how radically HIE has improved physicians’ practices and patient care throughout the country.
Patient Portal: For New Yorkers, designed by New Yorkers
Imagine, New Yorkers: You have access to your healthcare records when and where you need them. And it’s as easy as logging in to your banking website. You can print out a list of your current medications, check the last time you had a particular test or immunization, see recent test and lab results, and manage your consent for which doctors and specialists you want to be able to see your records—safely and securely. YOUR health information when YOU need it.
Developing the Patient Portal
In addition to giving providers the life-saving information they need to care for their patients, it is important that we also give patients access to their own healthcare data. Coupled with the need for consent management and access audit reporting, the development of a statewide patient portal is a necessary step towards empowering patients and allowing them to take an active role in managing their health. Read More
Congressman Higgins Endorses EHRs
New York State Congressman Brian Higgins recently addressed the benefits of using EHRs, discussing their effectiveness during natural disasters, such as Hurricane Sandy, and also in general, to improve the quality of patient care.
Health IT Facts & Figures
These charts and tables provide a detailed look at a variety of data in order to provide more a complete picture of health IT across New York State and the nation.
Welcome to our blog!
Greetings, salutations and welcome to our blog – a feature of our new NYeC website and a communication tool that I’ve been looking forward to for several months now!
As many of you know, the incredibly talented and dedicated NYeC team has been hard at work on a number of industry leading efforts.
Legislation & Policies
New York State Policies
EHR Requirements Document V2.2
This document summarizes the EHR (Electronic Health Record) functional requirements determined by the Statewide Collaboration Process (SCP). The participants include all recipients of grant funding under Phase 5 of the Healthcare Efficiency and Affordability Law for New Yorkers (HEAL-NY), and other interested stakeholders in the health care system of New York State.
RHIO Privacy and Security Policies and Procedures V2.2
This document sets forth Version 2.2 of the Policies and Procedures governing interoperable health information exchange via the Statewide Health Information Network for New York (“SHIN-NY“), facilitated by regional health information organizations (“RHIOs”) in New York State. Version 2.2 changed the Policies and Procedures Amendment Process to annual from biannual. Version 2.1 reflected changes from Version 2.0 resulting from clarification of the scope of one-to-one exchanges that do not need patient consent, as well as clarification and alignment of current SPG with SAMHSA interpretive guidance.
Barriers to the Exchange of Pediatric Health Information
This paper seeks to describe current laws that protect minors consenting to their own care, the barriers to exchanging health information for patients under 18, an interim solution reached by New York State, and ideas developed by a “Tiger Team” of experts to come to a more effective solution.
Standardized Consumer Consent Policies White Paper
This document sets forth recommended policies and guidelines governing consumer consent and other safeguards relating to the exchange of personal health information in an electronic, interconnected health care environment.
Vendor Contract Requirements
The purpose of this document is to set forth the terms and conditions that must be included in contracts between RHIOs, CHITAs, PCMHs, and other organizations that receive funding under NYS-funded Health IT programs and their technology vendors to ensure that any software or services provided by those vendors complies with the Statewide Policy Guidance and aligns with the federal regulations on Meaningful Use and certified EHR technology.
Who Has Access
All medical records, whether they are stored electronically or in paper files, are protected under the same laws. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) establishes rules to limit who can access and view a patient’s private health information.
Electronic health records do not make any extra allowances for access. In fact, they include an added layer of security, far exceeding that of paper records, by recording a history of all those who have previously viewed the information. Also, by law, medical info that is stored electronically is required to be encrypted.
Those granted access to records include only those directly involved in the treatment and care coordination of a particular patient, the patient him or herself, and any family member for whom that patient has granted consent. A patient has the right to grant or revoke consent to any new physician he or she may visit.
Health information can also be used to monitor public health, for instance in the case of tracking and reporting a flu epidemic and its demographics, or if injuries are sustained through violence and need to be reported to the police. Certain types of access to health information require specific consent from the patient. These include access by employers, or access related to advertising and marketing.
Barriers to the Exchange of Pediatric Health Information
This paper seeks to describe current laws that protect minors consenting to their own care, the barriers to exchanging health information for patients under 18, an interim solution reached by New York State and ideas developed by a “Tiger Team” of experts to come to a more effective solution. Read More
Whether you are looking for information about EHR consultants in your area, the most up-to-date information about federal incentive programs, or the address of your local Regional Health Information Organization, we can help.