Apple Health Records now available to veterans across the US

Posted:
in iPhone edited November 2019
Apple's plan to include Veteran's health records in the iPhone Health app has come to fruition, with all US veterans eligible for VA health care now able to access records in the app.




Following a summer-long trial, Apple and the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that veterans have access to the Health Records feature in the Health app on the iPhone. The VA joins Johns Hopkins, University of California San Diego, Quest Diagnostics, Allscripts and 400 other health care provider organizations, laboratory networks and electronic health records vendors who all support Health Records on iPhone.

"Helping veterans gain a better understanding of their health is our chance to show our gratitude for their service," said Jeff Williams, Apple's chief operating officer. "By working with the VA to offer Health Records on iPhone, we hope to help those who served have greater peace of mind that their health care is in good hands."

In the Health app, veterans can see all of their health records in one place, including medications, immunizations, lab results and more. The Health app continually updates these records giving VA patients access to a single, integrated snapshot of their health profile whenever they want, quickly and privately.

Historically, veterans have had a problem with records of medical treatment scattered across several facilities, vessels, or bases. The Health records integration isn't perfect, as evidenced by a check this morning, but in our case with one AppleInsider staffer, some old records housed in Virginia and Hawaii were fully integrated for the first time in 20 years.

However, some paper records, including some following a departure from service, have still yet to be entered or scanned for the record. AppleInsider has reached out to the VA for more information in regards to these records, and how long the full integration is expected to take.

After a debut in iOS 11.3, Health Records aggregates and stores encrypted patient data in the iOS Health app, effectively making that information portable and immediately accessible to end users. With Health Records, users are able to quickly review medical records and other pertinent information with doctors and caregivers, bypassing backend hurdles that can bog down access to treatment.

Apple launched Health Records with support from 39 health groups, with another 36 backing the technology in August. While a handful of larger regional groups integrated with the portability program, major nationwide networks are still out of the loop.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    I cannot imagine records reaching back to the Vietnam War or earlier have been digitized. I’d be very surprised if they had.
  • Reply 2 of 13
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,568administrator
    I cannot imagine records reaching back to the Vietnam War or earlier have been digitized. I’d be very surprised if they had.
    My boot camp physical from 1991 was, and I've spoken with others who had stuff from 1979 in the record. It's not universal, and I'm missing some stuff from the '00s.
    SpamSandwich
  • Reply 3 of 13
    AppleZuluAppleZulu Posts: 1,505member
    Any links or info on how a veteran would turn this one or otherwise connect up to this info? That seems to be oddly missing from the article at the moment.
  • Reply 4 of 13
    AppleZulu said:
    Any links or info on how a veteran would turn this one or otherwise connect up to this info? That seems to be oddly missing from the article at the moment.
    Just go to the Health app on the iPhone, select your profile pic and add a new health record. Then just follow the prompts....
    AppleZulubeowulfschmidt
  • Reply 5 of 13
    Just signed up. Boy my records are patchy. so much is missing and it’s patchy missing info between treatments, visits, etc. most lab results are unsourced. Most medications are unlisted. Etc.
  • Reply 6 of 13
    I cannot imagine records reaching back to the Vietnam War or earlier have been digitized. I’d be very surprised if they had.
    My boot camp physical from 1991 was, and I've spoken with others who had stuff from 1979 in the record. It's not universal, and I'm missing some stuff from the '00s.
    Yes, the sheer volume of manual entry and combing through old handwritten records must be mind boggling.
  • Reply 7 of 13
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,568administrator
    LenardH said:
    AppleZulu said:
    Any links or info on how a veteran would turn this one or otherwise connect up to this info? That seems to be oddly missing from the article at the moment.
    Just go to the Health app on the iPhone, select your profile pic and add a new health record. Then just follow the prompts....
    Yup, this is it. No different than any other supported institution.
  • Reply 8 of 13
    dewmedewme Posts: 4,649member
    No records found. I guess I'll have to wait until they find a way to digitize cuneiform based stone tablets to see my health records from my military service. 

    For all intents and purposes, unless there's a specific reason why the VA would want to (or is forced to) provide a healthcare related service to veterans without service connected disabilities who served more than a typical maximum service length number of years back in time, say 30-35 years, I doubt it's worth the time and effort for the government to pay someone to digitize semi ancient health records. I can imagine scenarios where the VA may be compelled to gather old health related data, for example for veterans who served during the Cold War in shipyards, in nuclear weapons testing and servicing environments, and especially during the prolific nuclear testing periods in the South Pacific from mid 1940s through early 1960s. This of course assumes that the service members were actually monitored for exposure, which may not have been required, and even it it was, whether the exposure data was documented in service records. 
  • Reply 9 of 13
    1348513485 Posts: 250member
    dewme said:
    No records found. I guess I'll have to wait until they find a way to digitize cuneiform based stone tablets to see my health records from my military service. 

    Well, yeah, it takes longer to scan vellum from the Punic Wars...non-standard page sizes and all.

    Your other thoughts are all legit. 

    I would hope that, whatever issues this new feature has on break-in, that this is the beginning of real, true medical record access and portability for everyone...maybe out there in the distance, in the mists.
  • Reply 10 of 13
    digitoldigitol Posts: 271member
    Hooyah
  • Reply 11 of 13
    chaickachaicka Posts: 256member
    The insurance companies will sure be eager to find ways to tap into this. It is of great value to them.
  • Reply 11 of 13
    chaickachaicka Posts: 256member
    The insurance companies will sure be eager to find ways to tap into this. It is of great value to them.
Sign In or Register to comment.