Posted by: AtlasMD

September 23, 2013

A Patient Portal To Nowhere

We freaking love Stephen Wilkins over at Mind The Gap. You get a perspective we don’t find as often on the annals of the Web, doctors and healthcare providers sharing their experiences seeing another doctor. Recently, Stephen was given his first and very own patient portal, a way to “take an active role in his healthcare.” His excitement was shortlived, though, since the first email he received was kind of a huge letdown — he had no access to his doctor, no access to his records, and when he thought about it, he was even a bit insulted. Wasn’t going to the doctor, exercising, taking his meds, etc., all part of an active role in his healthcare? This patient portal offered nothing active, except emailing nurses and staff instead of his doctor.


Yes, healthcare needs to take advantage of the digital tools at our disposal. But doctors, let’s not insult our patient’s intelligence. Perhaps we don’t even need to directly engage them so much as make ourselves available, helpful and NOT disengaging.