Patient/Consumer Involvement in Care Is Being Promoted by New Health Care Development

The United States’ Federal Government is seriously encouraging all of us (and by “all of us”, I mean people who are old enough to get a health plan on their own) to take control of our healthcare while protecting our privacy. The ONC (Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology) of the HHS (Health and Human Services) released its PHR (Personal Health Record) Model Privacy Notice. ONC hopes that this will provide patients a better awareness of PHR vendors’ security, privacy and data/information sharing practices – the internet is filled with unscrupulous people who want to get their hands on other people’s personal details so that they can milk ’em for every penny! Secondly, CMS (Centers for Medical and Medicaid Services) and other Health and Human Services agencies gave proposed regulation that would offer patients direct access to lab test results. Taking control of your healthcare is really an awesome idea. Naturally, a large bulk of the unwillingness of doctors and carriers to make this data/information available is simply because the Federal Government got involved in the worker’s privacy rights; thus, making it risky for the carrier or provider to release any info. This is now their effort to make up for what they have started initially.

The Federal Governments’ New Health Care Plan put forward 2 initiatives:

1. PHR (Personal Health Record) Model Privacy Notice This will offer patients the opportunity to get access to their health information. This will include an internet based health info technology that patients can utilize in order to take complete control of their new health care. A couple of PHR offered by entities that are covered and subject to the 1996 Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act, the privacy law will apply. A few PHR offered by third party vendors are not subject to the privacy law. Lastly, template for PHR issued to regulate form, the template is not necessary for PHR vendors but for the benefit of patients.

2. Direct Patient Access to Lab Test Results The HIPAA privacy law is to be modified in order to allow patients the opportunity to have straight access to their lab test results. Patients have the legal rights to access, assess and get copies of their own healthcare record under the HIPPA’s privacy law. If the state does not make provision for straight access, the patient should go through a healthcare provider in order to get their lab test results.

Looking to Buy a Franchise – More Buyers Asking About Health Care Plans

If you have been laid off from corporate America, perhaps you want to start your own business so you don’t get laid off anymore every time the business cycle turns south. Indeed, I doubt there are few who would blame you at this point, especially since we went through a rather dismal recessionary, and unemployment hit 11%. Still, many folks that have been laid off from corporate America are afraid to start their own business because they realize that if they work for a large company they get health care insurance and benefits.

If you are self-employed this gets to be rather difficult, as there are not as many great programs for small business owners and individuals that run their own companies. Perhaps, this is why so many people stay with corporate America even after they feel as if they’ve been abused just so the company can make greater profits, meet their quarterly objectives, or satisfy their shareholders. But did you know there might be a solution to this?

You see, if you buy a franchise you should know that most large franchisors do offer healthcare insurance plans, and many of these are as good or better than corporate plans. It is true that many small franchisors with less than 100 units may not have health care plans that are up to par with corporate America but the larger ones certainly do. If you are thinking about purchasing a franchise and yet, you are very concerned about your family’s health care, then maybe you need to ask your franchisor about this right away.

Believe me, you won’t be the first person to ask, and it is a perfectly legitimate question. As a franchisor, I can tell you that about half of the people who were interested in purchasing a franchise, considered this as part of their decision process. So, I hope you will please consider this.