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Kaiser Permanente Survey Shows Seniors Embrace Internet to Manage Their Health
Date:7/14/2009

OAKLAND, Calif., July 14 /PRNewswire/ -- New data show that Medicare beneficiaries registered to use My Health Manager, Kaiser Permanente's personal health record, are overwhelmingly satisfied with using the Internet to manage their health care online. Results from the recent Kaiser Permanente survey examining Web site usage and Medicare beneficiary satisfaction were presented today at the World Health Care Congress' 5th Annual Leadership Summit on Medicare in Washington, D.C.

The e-mail survey received 4,560 responses and had a response rate of 23 percent. It looked at respondents' comfort in using computers, Internet use habits, and current health status, including chronic conditions and prescriptions. More than 87 percent of respondents were satisfied or very satisfied with My Health Manager on kp.org.

"The extraordinarily high satisfaction rate of the survey respondents - all 65 and older - reinforces what we are learning among the general population: When a PHR like My Health Manager (www.kp.org/myhealthmanager) is thoughtfully designed for an easy and convenient user experience, individuals will engage more fully in managing their own health," said Jan Oldenburg, senior practice leader, Internet Services Group Health Portfolio, Kaiser Permanente. "The biggest surprise from the survey was discovering that the typical Kaiser Permanente Medicare beneficiary who is registered to use My Health Manager is very comfortable with computers, using the Internet daily and reviewing their medical record online a few times each month."

According to the survey, online appointment requests, the ability to e-mail your doctor and review test results online all contribute to overall satisfaction with My Health Manager, but respondents were most happy with the prescription refill feature. The survey also showed that most respondents reported being in good or better health (70 percent), and that members who reported being in excellent health are significantly more engaged in their health care than those who said they are in poor health.

"As people age, they become less mobile," added Oldenburg. "My Health Manager increases a patient's access to caregivers and health information from their own home. Having these capabilities online helps meet the health care needs of older adults."

Kaiser Permanente also participated in a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services-sponsored study on PHR use among Medicare members, the results of which are expected to be available later this year.

My Health Manager is directly connected to Kaiser Permanente HealthConnect((R)), one of the most robust and sophisticated electronic health records anywhere. My Health Manager is a free service available to all Kaiser Permanente members. Members can visit kp.org/register to sign up to activate and access their personal health records.

About Kaiser Permanente

Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America's leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, our mission is to provide high-quality, affordable health care services to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve 8.6 million members in nine states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health. For more information, go to: www.kp.org/newscenter.


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