Can’t login to your patient portal?

Can’t login to your patient portal?

We’re not launching Prime itself to the world just yet (soon!) but we are releasing something else today: the Patient Portal Finder.

It’s become clear to us in our concierge support of thousands of beta users that although a lot of people know where they get care, they don’t know where to view their medical information online. They want to, but not every provider makes it easy.

We’ve learned enough that today we’re taking what we learned and making it available publicly to everyone, for free, in one easy-to-use tool. This is the same technology we use to power Prime itself.

What does the Patient Portal Finder include? A few things:

  1. A list of all the thousands of providers—clinics & hospitals—Prime supports (most of the U.S.)
  2. Links to patient portals for each provider
  3. Full instructions for how to sign up, and access, your health information for each provider

Try it out! Find your doctor’s patient portal and view your results, medications, and doctor’s notes.

There is also a fourth optional step to sync your information to Prime, but that is not required. The point of this tool is to allow anyone, Prime user or not, to be able to easily view their medical information online. We’re making this information available free to everyone because we believe there are many—too many—people who need this information but can’t otherwise easily find it.

One more thing. We’ve also open sourced the full list of providers and their metadata for developers. As we add support for more providers, we will add them to the repo. As we learn more about providers, we will add more fields to each provider. We hope you’ll fork and do something amazing!

This has been a labor of love for us. We’re only able to do this because we’ve steadily increased the amount of care providers we support for over a year now as we race toward launching. From supporting a handful of providers in our pre-alpha days to thousands today, the Patient Portal Finder was not an overnight project. We hope it makes your life even just a little bit easier.


Prime syncs records from any doctor and allows you to message your family so everyone’s on the same page. Want an early access invite? You can request one here.

Default health apps are coming

Default health apps are coming

Healthcare is being disrupted, you just can’t see it. Yet.

A year ago I thought it bizarre how we have so many default apps replacing real-world tasks—Yelp for checking restaurant reviews, Tinder for finding a date, Etsy for handmade goods for your sweetie—yet we don’t have decent apps like this for our interactions with healthcare.

Over the last year since starting Prime, though, I realized these apps do exist. Healthcare is being disrupted, you just can’t see it yet.

Consumer services in healthcare are fast being unbundled from the outside:

  • Need a quick immunization for your upcoming trip? Minute Clinic.
  • Need a quick lab test done? Theranos.
  • Need medications delivered regularly? PillPack.
  • Want to know your genetic risk factors? 23andMe.
  • Kid got a fever—want a doctor to swing by and check it out? Pager.
  • … or just a quick video visit? Doctor On Demand.
  • … or just a quick text chat? First Opinion.
  • … or maybe a more general question about yourself? Better.
  • … and maybe just specifically about your skin? Spruce.
  • Moved and need to book an appointment with a new doctor? ZocDoc.
  • Need insight into your sleep? Sleepio.
  • … or your food choices? Lark.
  • … or your blood sugar? One Drop.
  • … or your blood pressure? Hello Heart.

These all could be categorized as solutions that give you the ability to do yourself what previously only physically visiting a doctor could do for you.

There are also plenty of solutions disrupting healthcare by creating wholly new experiences, typically enabled by inflection points in new technologies:

  • Need to coordinate care for a family member with their actual medical data? Prime.
  • Kids are sneezing; wondering if anything’s going around? Sickweather.
  • Want medication reminders on-the-go? Mango Health.

And healthcare is even increasingly taking on the task of disrupting itself:

  • Want your doctors to do house calls? Medicast.
  • Want another doctor’s opinion on your diagnosis? Figure 1.
  • Want to network with other doctors? Doximity.
  • Want to connect your doctors with diagnostic labs? Health Gorilla.

None of these are household names yet. But they are moving fast.

And I haven’t even mentioned another huge category: the fast-increasing number of solutions available to software developers every day. A quick glimpse: Validic for interfacing with wearables, Bloom to search and compare clinicians, athenahealth to build on their provider data set. But there are so many it really a deserves its own post1.

Default apps

I like the idea of default apps — apps that become synonymous with tasks.

When talking about default apps, people often remark on how interesting it is that some technologies become so default they even earn a spot as a verb in our vocabulary. (“Google it.”) What’s more interesting to me is that it’s human nature to want default apps. Our brains don’t handle complexity well so we prefer simplicity.2 For example, instead of being able to switch between 50 food-finding apps that are each subtly right in different contexts, we just use GrubHub. This is why brand affinity is a thing.

Quickly and surely this is happening in healthcare too. A year ago you could barely see it. Today it’s less hazy; every so often you hear a friend or coworker name one of the companies on this list. Next year, well… more.

There are no market leaders yet. But many of the companies that will become the market leaders in the new healthcare have already been started.

Market leaders will emerge, winners will take all, products will be verbified.

—Tyler


 

This was originally published on the Prime blog. Prime syncs records from any doctor, so you can keep track of your whole family’s health in one place. Right now Prime is in limited early access. Want an invite? Sign up here.

1. Hint.

2. Cf. [Analysis paralysis](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Analysis_paralysis)
Featured image: Bloomua / Shutterstock.com

Learning how to care when it’s already too late

Learning how to care when it’s already too late

In six months I’ll turn 30. I’ve seen friends in my situation start panicking right about now—a bit of an early-in-life reflection back on what they accomplished. Me, though, I’ve been doing that for almost a decade already.

Five years ago, on a Friday morning while sitting at home with my dad, he started coughing heavily. This wasn’t unusual; he’d been diagnosed with lung cancer a couple years earlier and had his ups and downs. This cough was heavier though, and soon I found myself in the driveway behind an ambulance, getting into my car while my dad and I thumbs-up’d each other as they closed the door. I got in my car and followed. The next 72 hours I spent with him in the hospital were the most up and down of my life. He was lucid and we shared stories, he slept for hours and seemed to be slipping. Monday morning, my dad passed away. I couldn’t see it coming. I eventually coped with the loss and it shocked me into action—I sold everything and moved to San Francisco. I got a job in tech.

Back then I was picking up every caregiving skill as I went. This was tough, as I didn’t know what I didn’t know.

I didn’t know if, as a son, I should be taking care of my dad (wouldn’t doctors do that?). I didn’t even know the term caregiving (sounds like senior homes?). At the speed with which I was discovering the new—what cancer is, how it affects someone, how it affects their loved ones—my brain had no extra bandwidth to parse anything else.

I’ve come to realize this is the nature of caregiving. Like parenting, caregiving is something you pick up as you go and just do your best. There’s no such thing as perfect caregiving.

Since then I’ve cared for two more family members: one with cancer, and one with congestive heart failure and diabetes. They are very different. But they’re also very similar. The emotions are the same. We still all go to the doctor for regular visits. I’ve seen first-hand how we as a family are held responsible for finding new doctors, coordinating the communication of results from one doctor to all the others, and being the arbiter and point of failure for a massive amount of communication and coordination. It is crazy. It is broken. It is unnecessary. And that’s just the tip of the caregiving iceberg.

I am a better family caregiver now than I was the first time.

I think back to when I was caring for my dad and how bad of a job I did, but at the time I (and our whole family) was doing my best. You can’t care someone into a cure—caring harder wouldn’t have saved my dad. But just even having the emotion of care in my heart saved the final days and months we had together.

I’m young but I’ve seen enough to know that life is for living. It never has stopped bothering me that I have the wisdom and perspective I have thanks to losing a family member. But I recognize loss is a central element of the human experience and I’m glad I had as much time and control as I did. It has been a gift that helps me enjoy every day a little bit more than I expect I would have otherwise.

Resources for caregiving are rapidly advancing, which is crucial as more of us develop more conditions and more of our family members are pulled into service. Communities like The Caregiver Space are pushing that forward. I wish I’d known I needed a resource like this those many years ago. I’m glad I at least know now.

Most of all I’ve learned one thing: It’s never too early to care. It’s never too late to learn how.


 

Tyler didn’t mention it in his piece, but his experience as a family caregiver motivated him to create an app to help manage medical records. Prime pulls all of the different electronic medical records into one place and share them with your family members. If you’re taking care of someone who sees multiple doctors, it’s a great tool. Check it out at UsePrime.com. – Cori