The personal health information management (PHIM) of older adults is poorly understood. We describe initial results from the SOARING (Studying Older Adults & Researching Information Needs and Goals) study at the University of Washington, a particpatory design investigation of PHIM in older adults. We conducted in-depth interviews with older adults (n=71) living in a variety of residential settings. A surprising 21% of participants reported using patient portals. Another 17% of participants reported prior use or anticipated use of portals in the future. We identified preferences and needs as well as barriers and facilitators to portal use. Our findings indicate that patient portals designed to target the specific needs for older adults can suport PHIM. We offer recommendations for expanded research.
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