The existing Health app on the iPhone can now display full health records, enabling users to securely view and store their medical records from healthcare institutions in the UK and Canada. Oxford University Hospitals in the UK and Women’s College Hospital in Canada are among the first healthcare institutions to make this feature available to their patients.
“We designed Health Records on iPhone to empower people to easily view their health records at any time, and we are thrilled to put this feature in the hands of customers in the UK and Canada,” said Apple’s vice president of Technology, Kevin Lynch. “We believe people should have access to their health information in the most private and secure way, and we have worked hand in hand with healthcare institutions and organizations to put privacy at the center of the patient experience.”
The feature has been available in the United States for some time, with support from over 500 institutions and 11,000 care locations.
Health Records in the Health app allows users to automatically consolidate records held in multiple locations, without the need for manual logins for each healthcare provider, making for much easier access.
“At NHSX, we are committed to giving patients access to their own records so they can take charge of their healthcare,” said Matthew Gould, CEO of NHSX. “The launch of Health Records on iPhone in the UK is a positive step and joins a number of initiatives across the NHS to put patients in the driving seat.”
Health Records integration creates a direct encrypted connection between medical institutions and a patient’s iPhone, allowing users to see a single view of their allergies, conditions, immunizations, lab results, medications, procedures, and vitals. Users can also be notified when their data is updated.
“Improving our services to patients while protecting their privacy and security is of paramount importance to us,” Professor Sir Jonathan Montgomery commented, chair of Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and professor of healthcare law at University College London. “This exciting development provides a more convenient option for patients to access their health records. Patients retain control over their own health information at all times.”
Apple has worked closely in recent months with Cerner, Epic, Allscripts, and InterSystems to enable the FHIR (Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources) standard integration with the Health app for their UK and Canadian patients.
“Women’s College Hospital is proud to be among the first in Canada to offer Health Records on iPhone,” Heather McPherson, president and CEO of Women’s College Hospital said. “As we accelerate our virtual care strategy, we are committed to shaping a health system that people can navigate more effectively. We believe that digital tools like Health Records can contribute to more informed decision making and improve the healthcare experience.”
So far only the following institutions in the UK and Canada support the feature:
- Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – Oxford, UK
- Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust – Milton Keynes, UK
- Women’s College Hospital – Toronto, Ontario
- St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton – Hamilton, Ontario
- Mackenzie Health – Richmond Hill, Ontario
Apple says that more medical facilities will connect to Health Records and offer patient access in the coming months.