December 15, 2008
UnitedHealth Group enters EHR space
Health insurer UnitedHealth Group has entered the electronic health record (EHR) space with myoptumhealth.com, an ad-supported web portal providing consumers with resources and tools geared toward managing personal health.
The portal marks the first insurance firm-backed portal open to consumers, regardless of health plan or employee status, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Scott Heimes, SVP, OptumHealth Consumer Solutions, told MM&M that the portal is engaged in “numerous promotional initiatives, including ongoing, full-scale PR efforts, and search engine marketing” to promote the site. The company is pushing for “an aggressive migration of users from its legacy HealthAtoZ.com site over to myOptumHealth.com,” said Heimes.
Healthline Networks developed the search engine function and also powers the search tool on UnitedHealth's website, according to the WSJ.
Myoptumhealth.com provides offerings similar to other online consumer health outlets, such as WebMD and Google Health. Privacy concerns have been a primary obstacle for EHR providers. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) provides privacy and security standards for insurers and healthcare providers, although medical records themselves are not governed by HIPAA.