Kevin Lynch, Apple's vice president of technology, said in a telephone interview Monday that the VA has adopted Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources, the same communications protocol that Apple has used to enable encrypted health records synchronization with other private and public health systems and individual doctors' offices. "It's truly an honor to contribute to the improved healthcare of America's heroes".
Last March, Apple announced that iPhone users at more than 100 hospitals and clinics across the country would be able to access parts of their medical records through the Health app. In less than a year, Apple has already signed up more than 130 health systems as data-sharing partners. With this new feature, veterans will be able to readily access details about their vaccinations, medications, lab results, and more.
Soon veterans will be able to access their aggregated records from the VA right from their iPhone's pre-installed Health app.
"These proposed rules strive to bring the nation's healthcare system one step closer to a point where patients and clinicians have the access they need to all of a patient's health information, helping them in making better choices about care and treatment", said HHS Secretary Alex Azar.
Data collected directly from a patient, say from a heart monitor on their Apple Watch, can also be integrated with health record information. The medical records data is secured with encryption, plus there's the iPhone's own lock for extra security.
"When patients have better access to their health information, they have more productive conversations with their physicians", said Jeff Williams, Apple's COO, in a statement.
We have great admiration for veterans, and we're proud to bring a solution like Health Records on iPhone to the veteran community.
The VA is the largest health-care organization in the nation with more than 1,200 facilities in total providing health care to more than 9 million Americans.