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Apple Brings Health Records to Veterans

Apple has been gradually expanding into electronic health care. Recently, the Cupertino company integrated Veterans Affairs patients into the Health app.

By Chand Bellur

November 7, 2019 at 3:48 p.m. PDT

Apple Partners with Department of Veterans Affairs to Offer Health Records

Apple recently launched a program to integrate Veterans Affairs patient data into the Health app. Veterans with iOS devices will now be able to review their medical history easily.

This comes at a time when the VA is in shambles, with poor data management causing some veterans to face mortality before they even see a doctor. Although Apple’s effort won’t speed up appointments and treatments, it does provide far better data management than the status quo.

Apple chief operating officer Jeff Williams said:

“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.”

Health App Ensures Patient Privacy

Patient privacy is a must these days. With the passage of HIPAA in 1996, all health care data must be kept private. Apple really doesn’t have a choice in this matter. Their competitors have to implement similar privacy features.

Apple does have one huge advantage — privacy is deeply integrated into their products. Touch ID and Face ID, for example, provide industry leading security.

Health App Aggregates Data

One of the most important features of the Health app is that it aggregates data from different health care providers. Few people see one health care provider. Most patients have a primary care provider, and are referred elsewhere for specialized treatment.

Beyond providers, healthcare treatments are also disparate. Patients want to view prescription histories, diagnoses, lab results and surgical treatment histories in one portal.

The Department of Veterans Affairs joins a short list of health care providers supporting the Health App. It’s impressive to see Apple and the VA turning around a notoriously flawed information system.

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