The Future of the PHR Reviewed and Explored.

News of another valuable contribution from the RWJ Foundation arrived a few days ago.

New Frontiers in Personal Health Records A Report Out from Project HealthDesign and Forum on Next-Generation PHRs


On September 17th, Project HealthDesign hosted more than 200 guests for a day long event that showcased personal health record (PHR) applications created by program’s nine multidisciplinary grantee teams from across the United States. In addition to highlighting what Project HealthDesign teams have learned in the process of developing these PHR tools, the forum featured panels and discussions with leading health IT pioneers, policymakers and industry experts.

A technical team headed by Walter Sujansky of Sujansky & Associates LLC, also introduced a set of functional requirements and technical specifications that allow different PHR applications to securely share medical and other information, with the consumer controlling who has access to what information.

Project HealthDesign is a $5 million national program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) with additional funding from the California Healthcare Foundation that is revolutionizing the purpose and potential of electronic PHRs. Each team created applications that help move the perception of PHRs from static repositories of health information to dynamic, tailored applications that allow people to easily and actively manage their health as they go about their daily lives. The project also ensured that these PHR tools can readily share common technical functions and operate on a common technology platform.

To read the event press release visit (link to release posted in the news archives section located under resources. The release is attached for posting)

To view Project HealthDesign grantee project information and visual stories visit

View a webcast of New Frontiers in Personal Health Records: A Report Out from Project HealthDesign and Forum on Next-Generation PHRs at (live September 21) or here:

To read event blog posts from the Project HealthDesign blog visit

Link to site.

The work being done is also given coverage in Health Data Management.

PHR Researchers Unveil Prototypes

Nine research teams have developed prototypes of technologies to support personal health records following 18 months of research. The prototypes range from a medication management system to help children with cystic fibrosis manage their disease to a “conversational assistant” that helps people with congestive heart failure manage their health from home.

The effort is supported by Project HealthDesign, a $5 million program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Over the next several months, the Project HealthDesign teams will publish details about their findings and attempt to extend the use of their applications to the clinical practices connected to their institutions. The projects include:

* A team at Vanderbilt University designed a PHR application to help children with cystic fibrosis play a larger role in self-care. Team members developed a device that can be incorporated into a stuffed animal or cell phone to work with the PHR to help children take the right medications at the right times, alert parents and caregivers if doses are missed and manage refills.

* The University of Rochester team designed a prototype system that uses a “conversational assistant” to provide congestive heart failure patients with a “daily check-up.” Through voice-activated questions and responses or text-typed chat, patients share information relevant to their condition. The computer interprets that input to provide personalized recommendations based on established guidelines and collects longitudinal data to share with the patients and their care providers.

* Stanford University and Art Center College of Design designed a set of multimedia PHR tools to help adolescents with chronic illness communicate with their providers and others about their health.

* T.R.U.E Research Foundation designed a PHR to help people with diabetes understand and track their self-care.

Plenty more here:

It is well worth exploring all this to see the range of ideas that are emerging as people progressively understand just where PHR technology may fit and the places it may make a difference.



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