How do patient portals work?

A patient portal is a site allowing for secure two-way communication between a person and his or her doctor or healthcare facility. Portal services are available around the clock.

Features that may be available through a patient portal include:
  • Prescription refills
  • Online bill payment by credit card
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Patient education
  • Lab results
  • Current medical conditions
  • Current medications
  • Secure e-mail communication between a person and his or her doctor (asking routine follow-up questions, leaving comments)
  • Some allow people to register and complete forms online, streamlining visits to doctor's offices or hospitals.
  • Some allow access to your full electronic health record (EHR).
  • Some can upload daily monitoring readings to help doctors keep tabs on people without an office visit (glucose levels, blood pressure and the like).

Continue Learning about Managing Your Medical Records

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.