Who Is Already Involved with Blue Button and Sharing Health Data?

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So today the Blue Button initiative has more than 500 members, some of them are the biggest players for whom this is relevant in the federal government including the White House, CMS, VA department of defense and most recently Indian health services who have decided to start sharing records electronically.

So they are all on board, they are all supporting us, but then in the private sector we've got most of the leading health firms. We have most of the leading pharmacies, we have labs and other kinds of entities too that share health information, about whole health information. Have all agreed hey we're going to share information with consumers directly and we're going to do it in a way, we're moving toward sharing it consistently using the same standards, so that in other words if you get your Blue Button data from say the VA and then you get your data from somewhere else maybe Etna you want them to use similar formats.

And the reason for that in part is that there is this whole exploding world of economic growth and opportunity in the apps and tool space. And that benefits consumers too not just companies because in truth, better than just having a printout say of what your doctor sees in your electronic health record, wouldn't it be that better to take that data and be able to mash it up with other kinds of data and have it analyzed into beautiful graphs and visuals that actually make sense to you, so that you could use them to meet your own health goals whether that's managing diabetes or training for a triathlon? The idea is we want this public-private partnership in which you've got certain folks who hold the health data and they are sharing it in a predictable formatted way.

And then you've got these apps and tool developers who are building tools that are really compelling for people, and then we also need folks in there who are helping to spread the word. Because this is kind of a different mentality for many Americans. In the past it was, you go to your doctor, you ask what you should do, you follow directions but you don't necessarily think about bringing information to your doctor and having a debate and having a collaboration about how to even define your health goals, never in mind to reach them.

And that's what we're moving toward and we also have members of the Blue Button initiative, who are consumer organizations like the American Cancer Society or the AARP. Who reach millions of Americans and can help to normalize this idea of you as a person getting, sharing, using your health information.