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Background: The dynamic healthcare reform initiatives have prompted unprecedented focus on coordination of care. The evolution of technology in the last decade has demanded increased coordination of care and patient involvement. Through patient portals, patients are able to view their personal health information and communicate with their providers through a secure web-based interface. However, there is limited research on the use of pediatric patient portals, specifically in the management of pediatric chronic diseases.
Objective: To discuss the access, impact, and utilization of patient portals in the management of pediatric chronic diseases.
Methods: We conducted a systematic review of the literature about patient portals and electronic health records (EHR) for pediatric patients from January 2009 through October 2014 to identify peer-reviewed publications in bibliographic databases and websites. Reviewers screened each publications for predetermined key themes including use, attitude and experiences, and impact of EHRs and pediatric patient portals. Eighty-five peer-reviewed publications were retrieved, and 19 of them met inclusion criteria (n=19).
Results: Themes of improved communication between patient and provider, patient access to healthcare information, and improved management of pediatric chronic disease were found, and barriers to the utilization of patient portals including lack of access to web-based interfaces due to low socioeconomic status and language barriers.
Conclusions: The potential for pediatric portals to augment the management of pediatric diseases in the near future is highly promising, though there are some issues in the barriers to utilization that still need to be addressed.
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