Almost two-thirds of Kaiser members use its PHR system

Four million members of Kaiser Permanente--63 percent--take advantage of the provider's personal health record (PHR) system to access their electronic health records and manage their health electronically.

The PHR, called My Health Manager, is directly connected to Kaiser's EHR system, enabling members to directly view their electronic medical records. In 2011, members signed into the PHR more than 74 million times, viewing 29.7 million lab results online and refilling 10 million prescriptions, according to Kaiser's announcement. Members also email providers, schedule appointments and access other resources.  In the last six months, 67 percent of registered members signed onto their PHR at least twice.

"My Health Manager empowers members to take charge of their health, and our data show that they are doing just that," George Halvorson, chairman and chief executive officer of Kaiser Permanente, said in a statement. 

Kaiser's EHR is the largest private deployment of an EHR in the world, connecting 533 medical offices and 37 hospitals as well as members and ancillary providers, such as pharmacies.

At least one study has shown that patient access to their EHRs can reduce discrepancies and improve patient safety. It also can boost member loyalty while helping providers to retain membership. 

Still, most patients with access to PHRs are not using them, indicating that access alone may not be sufficient to increase utilization.

To learn more:
- read the announcement