ONC Challenges Americans to Find Out What’s In Your Health Record?!

Erin Siminerio, M.P.H. | July 19, 2012

Share Your Story and Win Cash Prizes (#YourHealthRecord)

Many Americans can’t recall the last time they stepped foot into a bank to manage their finances. Eighty percent of U.S. adults use the Internet [1] and of those who are online, 61 percent do their banking online [2]. Yet when it comes to managing our health, most Americans don’t have their most important information—their health information—at their fingertips. Rather, this information is locked away in filing cabinets and folders.

What’s In Your Health Record Video Contest

To spur more patients to ask for access to view their medical record and to make getting access to health information online more widespread, ONC announced the “What’s In Your Health Record Video Contest??” (http://yourrecord.challenge.gov). The challenge is simple: Ask your health care provider for access to your medical record and tell us what you found when you took a look inside. Share your story by shooting a short video, and you may be eligible to win cash prizes.

Your story might be funny, inspiring, or instructive. Maybe you found something that surprised you, or some information motivated you to ask your provider a question or to change your behavior in some way. Or perhaps you noticed something was missing.

When Dave DeBronkart, known as ePatient Dave, reviewed his wife’s medical record, he noticed her penicillin allergy was missing, an omission that could have caused severe consequences.

Why Is ONC Doing This?

Despite the fact that we have a legal right to see and get a copy of our health record and request an amendment if the information is incorrect, most people haven’t exercised that right.

  • 41 percent of the public report they’ve never asked their doctor for copies of their health information, and
  • 83 percent say they’ve never asked for their information in an electronic format [3] despite having the right to get a copy electronically if their health plan or provider is able to provide it that way.

One of the biggest barriers preventing consumers from getting their health information is not knowing they have a right.

We hope the video challenge will help address this barrier by crowd sourcing personal stories from the public about how accessing  your health record helped make sure you or your loved one receive the best care.

In order to empower patients and families to play a more active role in our health care system, they need access to their information so they can:

  • Check to make sure the information on file is correct and complete (e.g. no medications or allergies are missing), and
  • Ensure that all the people who care for them  have the right information available to make the best decisions about their care.

How You Can Support this Effort

We invite you to enter the contest and share your personal story or to spread the word to others using the Twitter hashtag #YourHealthRecord to encourage others to ask to view their health record.

Cash prizes will be awarded to the producers of the winning videos, with a $3,000 prize for the 1st place winner.  Submissions are due by August 23 and winners will be announced in September 2012.

Our goal is to spark more dialogue about the benefits of getting access to your medical record and using it to take control of your health or to help manage the care of a loved one. We hope you will join us in this effort by accepting the challenge or telling your friends and family about it.

For More Information


[1] http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2012/Digital-differences/Main-Report/Internet-adoption-over-time.aspx Exit Disclaimer

[2] http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2012/Digital-differences/Main-Report/Internet-activities-Those-already-online-are-doing-more.aspx Exit Disclaimer

[3] www.markle.org/sites/default/files/20110110_HINLSurveyBrief_0.pdf Exit Disclaimer