Nursing Personal Health Record Assignment

Personal Health Records – Patient Concerns

In this writing assignment, you will write a one- to two-page paper in which you describe concerns in managing a personal health record.

Step 1 Read the scenario:

· Cindy is a 57-year-old single female who works as a graphic designer at a midsized paper manufacturer. She describes herself as being very shy and private. She weighs 358 lbs and is 5′ 8″ tall. She has recently lost her mother and is greatly concerned about improving her own health. She has been diagnosed with the following conditions: type II diabetes, hypertension, and asthma.


· For each condition, she sees a different provider in a different healthcare institution. However, all the institutions are affiliated with a large regional healthcare system. Cindy takes five prescription medications for her conditions and fills them at three different pharmacies, each located near one of her providers. In the past, she has kept her medical records in a box in her closet. She has become frustrated with the lack of communication between her providers and her relationship with them.

Step 2 Include responses to the following questions when you write your paper:

· What benefits do personal health records (PHRs) bring to patients?

· What concerns do personal health records (PHRs) bring to patients?

· What concerns do you envision Cindy having with adopting a PHR?

· Do you feel those concerns outweigh the benefits of adopting a PHR? Why or why not?

· How could these barriers be overcome?

· Where would Cindy seek guidance in adopting a PHR?

· Given the facts of this scenario of multiple health providers, multiple prescriptions, multiple pharmacies, and no PHR, how many potential points of failure exist in the overall care of this patient? Will a PHR help eliminate all or even some of these points of failure?

Cite any sources in APA, 7th edition with links to websites included.




Managing Personal Health Records: Addressing Concerns and Benefits

Cindy, a 57-year-old single female, faces multiple health challenges including type II diabetes, hypertension, and asthma. She navigates a complex healthcare landscape with different providers and pharmacies, all while dealing with the recent loss of her mother. As she seeks to improve her health, Cindy encounters various concerns and benefits associated with managing personal health records (PHRs).

Benefits of PHRs for Patients:

PHRs offer several advantages for patients like Cindy. Firstly, they provide easy access to comprehensive health information, including medical history, test results, and medication records, empowering patients to take an active role in their healthcare decisions (American Health Information Management Association [AHIMA], 2020). Secondly, PHRs facilitate communication between healthcare providers by ensuring that all relevant information is available in one centralized location, thereby improving coordination of care (AHIMA, 2020). Additionally, PHRs can enhance patient-provider relationships by fostering transparency and trust through shared access to health data (HIMSS, 2019).

Concerns Surrounding PHRs:

Despite their potential benefits, PHRs also raise concerns for patients. Privacy and security are paramount among these concerns, especially for individuals like Cindy who value their privacy (HIMSS, 2019). There may be apprehension about the potential misuse or unauthorized access to sensitive health information stored in PHRs. Moreover, the complexity of managing and updating PHRs, particularly in cases involving multiple providers and pharmacies, can be overwhelming for patients, leading to concerns about usability and interoperability (HIMSS, 2019).

Cindy’s Concerns with Adopting a PHR:

Given Cindy’s shyness and desire for privacy, she may be hesitant to share her personal health information electronically, fearing breaches of confidentiality (HIMSS, 2019). Additionally, the fragmented nature of her healthcare, with different providers and pharmacies, could exacerbate concerns about the accessibility and accuracy of her PHR. Cindy might also worry about the time and effort required to maintain her PHR amidst her busy schedule and emotional distress.

Balancing Concerns and Benefits:

While Cindy’s concerns about adopting a PHR are valid, the benefits likely outweigh them. The convenience of having her health information readily accessible and the potential for improved communication and coordination of care can significantly enhance her overall healthcare experience and outcomes (AHIMA, 2020). With proper safeguards in place to address privacy and security concerns, Cindy can confidently embrace the advantages of managing a PHR.

Overcoming Barriers:

To overcome barriers to PHR adoption, Cindy could seek guidance from various sources, including her healthcare providers, who can offer assistance in setting up and managing her PHR (AHIMA, 2020). Additionally, patient advocacy groups and online resources can provide valuable information and support tailored to her specific needs and concerns.

Points of Failure in Care and PHR’s Role:

In Cindy’s scenario, the lack of communication between her providers and pharmacies introduces numerous points of failure in her care, including medication errors, duplication of tests, and gaps in treatment coordination. A PHR has the potential to mitigate many of these points of failure by centralizing and streamlining access to her health information across all involved parties, facilitating better communication and coordination of care (HIMSS, 2019).

In conclusion, while concerns about privacy, security, and usability may arise, the benefits of adopting a PHR for patients like Cindy are substantial. With proper guidance and support, Cindy can effectively manage her health information, improve communication with her providers, and ultimately enhance her overall healthcare experience.


American Health Information Management Association. (2020). Benefits of Personal Health Records. Retrieved from

Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS). (2019). Patient Engagement & Personal Health Records. Retrieved from

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