Google Health, the SaaS approach to Health Care records by Google Inc.,
received a boost today with the addition of CVS pharmacy to the list of
pharmacies they support. I am a great sucker of online health records and, even
though I was not greatly impressed, I had a neutral opinion about Google Health in its early stages. In
has covered both Google Health and Microsoft’s HealthVault here at Cloud Avenue
and he was not at all impressed with them.
I don’t want to get into the politics of Healthcare here in this space.
Irrespective of what side you are, it is easy to see the need to streamline
access to healthcare records of patients. The best way to streamline the records
is by taking them to Clouds. Now we are treading into a tricky situation. Of all
things in people’s lives, the privacy of their health care records is very
important. By moving into Clouds, we are entering into a slippery slope where
both sides have valid arguments. So it is important to take the privacy issues
into account while making this move. Even though I am a sucker of protecting our
privacy, I don’t believe in putting the health records in a paper and then lock
it in a fire-proof, natural disaster proof, xxxxx-proof safe in a heavily
guarded building. I would prefer to have my records in a secure place with easy
access. Plus, I want to control who sees the data rather than my physician or
insurance company. SaaS based approach to solving this problem appears to be the
best solution for me. Of course, I want this to be heavily regulated to protect
the privacy of health care data of the patients. In short, I am convinced that a
SaaS approach to health records, with proper regulations, is the correct
approach in this Cloud Computing era.
Like Zoli, I am also unimpressed with the progress on the Health 2.0 front.
Both Microsoft and Google are relatively quiet about their plans. But today’s announcement by Google offers some hope that we will
eventually get there. The integration with CVS allows more than 100 million
people in US to access their records through Google Health by importing your
data from the pharmacy and also in managing the prescriptions through it. Though
it is not a big leap, it is a solid tiny step towards Health 2.0 and towards
helping to lower the health care costs.
We’re working to solve this problem. With the recent addition of CVS/pharmacy
to our network of pharmacy partners, more than 100 million people can now access
their prescription history online and import it into a central, secure place — a
Google Health Account. In addition to CVS, we’re proud to be working with several other
well-known national and regional pharmacy chains to improve patient safety,
reduce medical errors, and increase efficiencies in health
I would definitely like to talk to both the Google Health team and Microsoft
Healthvault team. If anyone from these team are reading this blog, please get in touch