As the US moves toward a more patient centered health care system, an integrated Electronic Health Record with a Patient Portal is one way that providers and patients can more actively collaborate in the health care process. A patient portal is an Internet-based interactive website for patients to communicate with their healthcare provider and with varied functions that gives them access to portions of their medical record and other services [1,2,3,4]. Many hospitals and health centers in the USA have developed patient portals while others are still in the planning stage. From a review of the literature it is evident that there is no standard of the scope of functions that are essential in the Patient Portals and to date most are only accessible in English. If we are truly moving towards a patient centered focus in health care in a diverse society, we need to design patient portals that tailor these resources to the needs of this diverse population. This paper reports on the results of an online survey that was distributed between August and October 2007 to nursing informaticists who subscribe to the CARING e-mail list and nursing informaticists working in the Greater New York City area. The goal of the survey was to see how many of the institutions where nursing informaticists work had patient portals, what functions were embedded in these portals, what research was being conduct., and what plans each institution had for future directions.
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