Tag: Blue Button Challenge

The Red, White and Blue Buttons

The Health 2.0 Developer Challenge announced more details this week on its Blue Button Challenge, including the recruitment of Craig Newmark as a judge. The challenge comes from Markle Foundation & the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and it’s looking for solutions that will best use that new data source and make it meaningful for consumers. In the post below, Margalit gives a few hints as to what she’d like to see!–Matthew

On August 3rd President Obama announced the advent of a new button: The
Blue Button. The Blue Button is a health data download button. Consumers
can presumably click on the Blue Button and their medical records will
then commence downloading to their computer (securely, of course).
Anybody can get a complete medical record on demand; with no delays from
the busy medical records department and no special fees and no rims and
rims of paper records to carry around. Sounds like an awesome step
forward for medical records portability.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will make Blue Buttons available for Medicare beneficiaries and so is the Veterans Administration (VA). The Markle Foundation issued a policy paper and a challenge to developers to do something meaningful with the Blue Button data (in partnership
with Health 2.0). Crunching the numbers yields about 30% of us with full
electronic access to our medical records by virtue of a Blue Button.
This is all very exciting and definitely warrants a closer look.

The VA delivers health care and it has an EHR (VistA) and gigantic
amounts of electronic medical records to share. The VA also has a
website, My HealtheVet, where
members can access their latest medical records, view benefits and
perform simple transactions, such as requesting meds refills and
updating information. My HealtheVet, which is truly a PHR, will now be
sporting a Blue Button, so members can download their electronic medical
records in ASCII text format. The VA has a sample download file and it looks very useful.

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