Here you have it: MyChart assessed by a patient and a doctor.
Six Surprising Features of the MyChart App
Are we just easily impressed or is this pretty cool?
1. Being Able to Text Your Doctor. Okay, more like email, but a lot of times you’ll have answers within a day. Being able to send her weird pictures we need answers for without having to look her in the eye afterward makes us more grateful for technology than ever.
2. Getting Prescriptions Refilled Easy Peasy. The medications tab has all of your prescriptions listed, with easy little refill buttons you can press without ever having to talk to anyone.
3. Spying on the Nurses. Ever wonder what the nurses are typing about you while you’re just sitting there telling them all of your problems? They’re logging all of your diagnoses. You can read them in your past appointment notes, along with your follow-up instructions and vitals from the day.
4. Managing Appointments. You can see all of the upcoming appointments you have so you never forget one again, and even schedule appointments through the app, again, so you don’t have to call and talk to the receptionist and explain your weird symptoms yet again.
5. Spending All the Money. You can pay your bills and even get estimates for procedures though the app.
6. Seeing Your Test Results. There’s no better feeling than reading “normal results” on your app following blood work, cultures and panels — instead going by the “no news is good news” rule.
Do Doctors Actually Like it?
It’s not just the patients that are benefitting from this; doctors are loving the benefits, too. We asked Ann Marie Richards, MD:
Have you seen improvements in patient’s experiences since the app has launched? Any specific examples?
All of the time! One of the great features of MyChart is that patients can send messages directly to their health care provider. Many times a lot of information is covered during an appointment, and patients leave thinking “now what did she tell me to do again?!”. With MyChart, my patients are able to send me a message directly with any questions they forgot to ask or questions about their visit and I or a member of my staff can respond right back to them with information. Many patients view their labs online before they see me and when they come in for their appointment they have already started to develop a plan for how they plan to improve their cholesterol or diabetes control.
What’s your favorite feature of the app?
I love that patients can put themselves on my schedule. We all have busy schedules, and when you are sick or don’t feel good or have a question and want to see your doctor, you want to be able to make an appointment to see them when it is convenient for you. You probably do not want to have to call and wait on hold to try and figure out an appointment time. With MyChart, my patients are able to access my clinic schedule and put themselves on it during a time that is best for them. My staff works hard to arrange our schedule so that we have same-day availability, so that if you don’t feel good and need to see me that day, you have the ability to log in to MyChart and put yourself on my schedule to see me that same day.
Do you enjoy communicating with patients this way? Why?
I love it! Many times when we go to see our doctor we have several questions to ask. Sometimes, we forget to ask all of our questions or a question comes up after the visit. Other times, something happens and a medication that was supposed to be waiting at the pharmacy isn’t there. Instead of having to call, MyChart allows people to just send a message directly to the clinic. It makes things faster for my staff, as they can quickly respond to patient’s concerns or requests, and it keeps my patients from having to play phone tag with a nurse.
Has it made your job any easier?
110% easier. I love MyChart. In today’s world it only makes sense that everyone should have access to their medical record. They call it “MyChart” for a reason. Your health information should be yours to access. When I get lab work back for a patient, it is much easier for me to send an email or MyChart message to them with all of the lab results for them to read and an explanation for what they mean rather than try to explain it over the phone. It also provides patients with an actual physical record of their lab results that they can go back and view and reference at any time. MyChart also allows my patients to fill out pre-visit questionnaires before they see me, which helps me better understand their concerns during a visit. For example: If you have a fever, chills, and were recently exposed to someone with the flu, then you can log into MyChart, put yourself on my schedule for that day, and fill out a quick questionnaire to explain all of your symptoms. When you check in, I’ll know what your symptoms are by your completed questionnaire and know that we need to go ahead and test for the flu. This makes my job easier and I believe it also provides higher quality care.
Are you convinced? Download MyChart now.
This Q&A was produced in partnership with FirstHealth.