Use it

Your health record can help you understand, advocate for, and manage your own health care — it can make you an expert on you.

It’s very common to get your health record for a specific use — like when you have a new primary care doctor or you need to share some test results with your care team. These are great reasons to get it. But it can also be empowering to have your record for your own use.

Your health record can help you understand, advocate for, and manage your own health care — it can make you an expert on you.

Explore these tips on how to make the best use of your health record. And keep in mind that it will be easier to share and manage your health information if you have an electronic copy of your health record.

Share your health record

Having your health record makes it easier for you to share it. Sharing your health information helps ensure that all of the doctors and caregivers you work with have the information they need to safely care for you, including:

Stay on top of your health care

Having your health record can give you a complete picture of your health. You can:

Use an app to manage your health information

You may have heard of apps (programs) that track things like fitness and calories. There are also health apps that help you manage your health record from your phone or tablet.

Remember, however you store and manage your health record, it’s important to make sure that it’s secure. You may be able to securely upload your health record directly into an app from your provider’s portal. Learn how to protect your personal information.

What are the benefits of a secure health app?

Some apps also let you:

Many people use health apps — you might like one too!

About 4 in 10 people with a smartphone or tablet have a health or wellness app.

Source: ONC Data Brief 40 [PDF - 1.7 MB]

What should I look for in a health app?

If you are looking for an app to help manage your health information, use this checklist. Make sure it:

Frequently Asked Question

Do I have to pay for a health app?

There are many free health apps. However, if you want some of the more complex features — like medication information or health and wellness tracking — you may have to pay a one-time fee or an annual subscription.

Troubleshooting Tip

The upside of downloading

Avoid health apps that require you to manually type in or scan in (photograph) your health information. Downloading your electronic health record directly into the app is often more secure — and makes it easier to keep your health information accurate and up-to-date.

Where can I find secure health apps?

You can find them just about anywhere apps are sold, including:

Quick Quiz: How to Choose an App

When choosing a health app, what’s most important?

E is correct! You’ll want to do your homework on an app to make sure that it does what you need it to do and what it says it will do — and that it protects the privacy of your health information.

That’s true, but E is actually the correct answer because you’ll want to do your homework on the app and check out all of these resources to make sure that it does what you want it to do and what it says it will do — and that it protects the privacy of your health information.