Patient Accessible Electronic Health Records: Exploring Recommendations for Successful Implementation Strategies

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The purpose of this article is to develop recommended strategies for successful implementation of patient accessible electronic health records. [1]


The Patient Accessible Electronic Health Record (PAEHR) workshop was held in Toronto, Canada in 2006[1] where experts from around the world met to discuss the issues facing allowing patients to have access to the EHR, as well as the type institutional changes which would be required after such a change is made. The objective was to compose a draft with recommendations that would aid health care organizations in providing patients access to their electronic health record in a responsible way.[1]


Forty-five participants attended the workshop and made recommendations in the following four categories[1]:

  • Providing patient access to the EHR
  • Maintaining privacy and confidentiality related to the PAEHR
  • Patient education and navigation of the PAEHR
  • Strategies for managing institutional change

The discussion focused on the need for “clear definitions for privacy, security and confidentiality, flexible, interoperable solutions, and patient and professional education” [1] in addition to advocating for additional research to be made to ensure patient accessible EHRs are designed with evidence-based practice in mind.


It is very important for patients to be able to access their personal health information as it is a crucial requirement for increasing patient engagement and empowerment; but health care organizations should carefully weigh the pros and cons of such an endeavor beforehand.


I agree with the conclusion of the review as people should be interested in their own health and well-being as they are their own best advocates; and providing access to their personal health information may be a good way to increase interest.

Related Read: Implementing Patient access to Electronic Health Records under HIPAA: Lessons learned

The challenges in making electronic health records accessible to patients


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Wiljer, D., Urowitz, S., Apatu, E., DeLenardo, C., Eysenbach, G., Harth, T., ... & Canadian Committee for Patient Accessible Health Records (CCPAEHR. (2008). Patient accessible electronic health records: exploring recommendations for successful implementation strategies. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 10(4).