Case Study: A 65-year-old woman was just been diagnosed with Stage 3 non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. She was informed of this diagnosis in her primary care physician’s office. She leaves her physician’s office and goes home to review all of her tests and lab results with her family. She goes home and logs into her PHR. She is only able to pull up a portion of her test results. She calls her physician’s office with concern. The office staff discussed that she had gone to receive part of her lab work at a lab not connected to the organization, part was completed at the emergency room, and part was completed in the lab that is part of the doctor’s office organization.
The above scenario might be a scenario that you have commonly worked with in clinical practice. For many reasons, patients often receive healthcare from multiple organizations that might have different systems.
As you review this scenario, reflect and answer these questions for this discussion. What are the pros and cons of the situation in the case study? What safeguards are included in patient portals and PHRs to help patients and healthcare professionals ensure safety? Do you agree or disagree with this process? What are challenges for patients that do not have access to all of the EHRs? Remember, only portions of the EHRs are typically included in the PHRs.