Faculty and patients looking over files
By Michael Haederle

Gaining Access

UNM Health Patients Have New Options for Viewing Their Medical Records

Patients in The University of New Mexico Health System will soon have new ways to access their medical information online.

The existing MyHealthUNM patient portal has been augmented by a new personal health record application called mCharts, which presents patient information in an interactive easy-to-use format, said Shannon Robinson, clinical applications analyst in the UNM Hospitals Information Technology Department.

“It lets patients track things like their health conditions, their prescribed medications, their vital signs and their laboratory results,” she said. “Their tool has some ability to do some trending.”

UNM Health is also evaluating whether to authorize access to Apple’s Health app, which works with the Apple Watch, and the Epic MyChart web portal, Robinson said.

“There are a bunch of security pieces that go into that,” she said. “Our electronic medical record vendor has to vet everything first.”

The new medical record tools are a response to federal rules promoting greater patient access to their own health records.

“The attitude is that patients should be able to see their stuff,” she said. “They want them to access information about their medical record in the manner that they want to receive it.”

Patients wanting to use the mCharts tool first need to establish a patient portal account with UNM Health, Robinson said. “That’s how they’re tagged with their unique identifiers.”

They would then visit the mCharts website, select UNM Health as their provider and use login credentials to import their health information. There are both desktop and mobile phone versions of the service.

More alternatives could be in the pipeline, Robinson said. “There are a lot of developers in the health care space that are developing or have developed third-party apps that allow patients to view their information that way.

“Our plan is to just keep connecting to these different apps as they become available and patients request them.”

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