Family Health Guy

In which Sean talks about HealthVault and other cool ideas in Personal Health

New Year 2013: Take five minutes to make your family safer

New Year 2013: Take five minutes to make your family safer

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While it’s certainly cliché, this really is a great time of the year to “reset” a few things and make sure that each new year is just a little better than the last. Most of us have had a little time off to share food, games and conversations with family and friends --- I’ve had a fantastic time in particular with my daughter home from school and my son out on the mountain.

A brief break in very busy lives. Which makes it a good time to think about resolutions and changes, but also a little daunting to think about big changes knowing the chaos will return soon! So with that setup, my New Year’s offering to you is an easy win --- take just five minutes and make your family safer in 2013 than it was in 2012.

HealthVault is a free, online, worldwide service from Microsoft --- your family’s key health information in one, safe place that you control, and isn’t a front for advertisements or somebody selling your data. Perhaps most importantly it’s always available on your phone, tablet or browser --- ready to help your loved ones get the right care in any emergency situation.

Once you get started with HealthVault, it can help you in dozens of ways --- and connect easily to your doctors, pharmacies and labs to make sure the information is up to date. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves --- right now, just get those records started. It’s easy:

  1. Point your web browser at http://healthvaut.com/eprofile.
  2. Enter emergency contact and health information for yourself and your family members.
  3. Print out information cards and put them in wallets, purses, backpacks, and glove compartments.
  4. Download a free application for your smartphone (iPhone / Android*** / Windows) so the information is always there too.

That’s it! We’ll even send you a reminder in a few months to review the information and make sure it’s still accurate. It’s hard to imagine a simpler, easier way to make your family safer in the coming year.

Please take a few minutes and get this done. You’ll feel great about it … and so will my team that works so hard all year to deliver this great service to the world. Thank you, and Happy New Year!

---S

PS … a special plea to all my colleagues in the world of Health IT … too many of us preach the benefits of family-centered care and then ignore our own! This is a great time to fix that.

*** Note that for Android I’ve linked to iTriage, a great app that connects to your HealthVault record and includes a bunch of other great health tools. Once you’ve installed iTriage choose “My iTriage” then “My Health Records” to include your HealthVault information. iTriage is also available for the iPhone … it’s a great tool!

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