A System for Organizing our HealthNov 23, 2021
Good day everyone. I'm so glad to be here with you today. Today, our focus is on a system for organizing our health.
Most often, we really don't take very much time to think about how we organize our health and our health information. Here, I just want to touch on a few ideas regarding the organization for our health or of our health.
Typically, we organize many things in our lives. It could be our schoolwork, it could be our work time, it could be our calendar of appointments, it could be our meal schedule. I propose to you that we all need a system for organizing our health, which brings together all the key information that you need to get better and feel better. My goal is to make sure that we're focused on wellness, prevention of disease and illness, and or if we're feeling not so well, getting better.
However, health information organization is not something that is necessarily intuitive or that we immediately can understand. So, many smart people have thought about this over the years and in your doctor's office they have a system for organizing your health information. It's called the medical record.
In the not-so-old days (and still in many places today), medical records were written on paper and in many countries we still use paper-based records to organize health information. In the United States or in many other countries now, many hospitals and clinics are moving to what we call the electronic health record.
The electronic health record is really a system and it's a system to organize all the health information that is collected by your doctor or doctors if you're seeing multiple providers. Your medical record is designed to serve as a clearinghouse for most or all of our health information. So, the goal is to enable all healthcare providers to contribute information to your electronic health record.
The good news is that nowadays the electronic health record can be made available to you and many hospitals and clinics are already giving you at least partial access to your electronic medical records. There is also a push by many medical record companies to make this information available to multiple providers across different hospitals that you use.
So for example, if your doctor is at hospital A and then you get sick, your doctors, if you go to another hospital, hospital B, those doctors in the second hospital can actually see your medical record electronically because the information is stored in what we call the cloud. We're on cloud-based servers. These are data storage devices that allow electronic health record vendors or companies to keep information up in the cloud so it's available at a moment's notice.
The good news about electronic health records is that if it's available across multiple providers, it can be updated and then each provider can see the update immediately as it happens and there's no waiting time. Also, if you need to provide records to another provider for referral or for a subspecialty evaluation, you can actually get that electronic health record transferred and you don't have to necessarily always print out a paper-based copy or a paper record of your procedures or doctor nodes or other evaluations that you have. So that's all really, really good news in the world of electronic health records.
But, when we think about our own kind of home based system or personal system for organizing our health records, it may go beyond just that information that's in your electronic health record. What I mean by that is, for example, our diet. Our diet information is not necessarily detailed or described very well in electronic health record. Another example would be our other nutrition that we use. For example, a supplement or protein supplements that we use if we're working out or training. It may also not include your fitness regimen, so if you're training or if you're performing certain exercises at the gym, that plan or that information may not be in your electronic health record.
Now, if we maintain a system at home, it would be very nice to keep all this information in one place so we can access it and link information from one aspect of our health life to another. For example, if we could connect our diet or our nutritional intake to our health conditions or medications that we're taking or vitamins that we're taking, we can actually see where we may be deficient or we may be able to link and understand why we're feeling a certain way because of our intake, our diet or exercise, our sleep patterns or other health events or health parameters that we keep track of in our home based health system.
Another aspect of the home-based health system or your own health system that you maintain is to keep track of other evaluations that you have. For example, if you undergo some genomic testing, we call it genetic testing through a commercial vendor for example, you can maintain that health information yourself. You can get a copy of it electronically, and I'll talk to you more about how we do this and how you can look at that information, to actually pull it into your home-based or your own health organizational system, okay. That's important because nowadays what we understand is that certain genetic characteristics mean that we may actually metabolize medications or drugs differently from other people.
We're going to talk much more detail about this because it's a real exciting emerging field and you're going to find that as we go forward, you're going to learn a lot about how your own genetic profile, genetic characteristics can help you not only understand your current health, but also help predict what may happen in the future and actually you could then act to prevent certain conditions that you may be at risk for.
As we go forward talking about health systems, we're going to organize our information and bring it all under one umbrella so it's easy to access, easy to understand and easy to share with people that can help us stay healthy. All right, so for now I'm going to leave you with those concepts and we're going to delve much more deeply into those in coming discussions. Thank you very much. See you again soon!