265102 Understanding the demographic characteristics of personal health record users in an integrated healthcare organization

Monday, October 29, 2012 : 4:50 PM - 5:10 PM

Matthew Griffin , Internet Services Group, Kaiser Permanente, Pleasanton, CA
Valerie Sue, PhD , Internet Services Group, Kaiser Permanente, Pleasanton, CA
Jill Allen, PhD , Internet Services Group, Kaiser Permanente, Pleasanton, CA
Background: The revolution in healthcare occurring in the past decade has had at its center a host of electronic healthcare services. Paramount among them is the personal health record (PHR). PHRs help patients communicate with providers, access their health information, and conduct clinical transactions. PHR use has been said to result in increased patient health engagement, improved disease management and enhanced patient-provider relationships. However, these benefits may disproportionately accrue to populations with the resources and skills necessary for online engagement. This study presents a detailed analysis of the demographic factors associated with PHR use among patients of a large integrated healthcare organization. Objectives: 1) To investigate the demographic characteristics of patients who use the PHR. 2) To compare the characteristics of PHR users to the organization's total patient population. 3) To determine where e-health disparities may exist. Methods: Data are from Kaiser Permanente's patient and website databases. Demographic and PHR utilization information on all adult patients was used in a retrospective data analysis. Results: The three most frequently used PHR features were: online lab test results, physician email, and online prescription refills. Non-white patients were less likely than white patients to be registered for the PHR. Women were more likely than men to use each of the features. Older patients were more likely than younger patients to use the PHR and were the most frequent PHR users. Hispanic patients were less likely than patients of any other racial/ethnic group to use the PHR. Discussion: We found support for a digital divide across racial/ethnic groups. Not only were Hispanic patients less likely than others to register for the PHR, those who were registered were less likely to use the PHR. The most prominent difference was in the use of physician-patient email. Language skill is a potential barrier to PHR use.

Learning Areas:
Diversity and culture
Other professions or practice related to public health
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
1.Explain which PHR features are being used most by patients of a large integrated health care organization. 2.Describe the demographic characteristics of PHR- and non-PHR users. 3.Discuss the racial/ethnic disparity in PHR use.

Keywords: Health Disparities, Hispanic

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to be an abstract Author on the content I am responsible for because I am one of the primary investigators of this project.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.