Reading an article from newly named Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson-article was written before he attained the position 4 days ago – where Mr. Tyson talks about how connected the patients at KP are with their health records. Having worked as a consultant at KP before (and remember that little page about disclaimers up there to the right….) I think that Mr. Tyson is on the right path.
Technology is changing this paradigm and creating what we at Kaiser Permanente call connected care. This means that all the patient’s providers have access to the same health care records and information is available around the clock. Patients can access their full medical records electronically anytime, viewing all medications, lab results, office visits, and more. They even have direct access to their physicians through e-mail. Patients can connect to health information 24/7 and manage their health care when it’s convenient to them instead of having to wait for an appointment. And it is safer and more secure.
The unfortunate part is that I am not a KP member. I do not live in a KP serviced area. I do not have the connection that Mr. Tyson talks about. And somehow that is wrong – for me. Why don’t I have that same information? I don’t have health insurance right now. So does that mean I don’t get access to my records? Is it dependent on me having insurance or having a doctor that I use – and then must I use them regularly? Where are the rules for when and what records I get to see? And how long do I have to see them? Can I look back 5 years?
I applaud KP for the work they have put into making this happen. I personally know of the blood, sweat and tears that went into where they have gotten so far. So what is holding the rest of us back? Were we waiting on an election? Shame on us? While we were waiting on that election there were insurance companies buying up hospitals and health systems. Now they have my information even if I don’t.
More to come….just thought I’d ruffle the feathers a little…shake it up some… maybe get your attention…..