Employers Launch Electronic Records Initiative
Five major U.S. corporations on Wednesday announced an initiative to provide their combined 2.5 million employees and their dependents with personal health records in an effort to reduce administrative costs, duplicative care and medical errors, the AP/Houston Chronicle reports.
The companies involved in the initiative are:
- Applied Materials;
- BP America;
- Pitney Bowes; and
- Wal-Mart (Freking, AP/Houston Chronicle, 12/6).
The founders of the initiative, called Dossia, have tasked Omnimedix Institute with building the PHR infrastructure, Health Data Management reports. The PHR system will be based on a federated database model and will include information from multiple sources (Health Data Management, 12/6). Omnimedix will collect data from insurers, pharmacies and providers, and patients will be able to add information such as their family's medical history.
Only employees will have access to their health records, the AP/Chronicle reports.
Intel Chair Craig Barrett added, "The companies don't have access or control over the database" (AP/Chronicle, 12/6).
The number of employers participating in the initiative is expected to increase to 10 in the next few months, the AP/Chronicle reports (AP/Chronicle, 12/6).
Several broadcast programs reported on the Dossia program:
- APM's "Marketplace": The segment includes comments from Eric Brown, vice president of the health care practice at Forrester Research, and Deborah Peel, founder and chair of the Patient Privacy Rights Foundation (Grech, "Marketplace," APM, 12/6). A transcript and audio of the segment are available online.
- NPR's "Day to Day": The segment includes comments from Janet Babin, a reporter on the innovations desk for APM's "Marketplace" (Pesca, "Day to Day," NPR, 12/6). Audio of the segment is available online.
- PBS' "Nightly Business Report": The segment includes comments from Barrett; Dr. Douglas Henley, executive vice president of the Academy of Family Physicians; J.D. Kleinke, CEO of Omnimedix; and Joy Pritts, assistant research professor at the Health Policy Institute at Georgetown University (Dhue, "Nightly Business Report," PBS, 12/6). A transcript of the segment is available online.