PCP Touts the Benefits of the Patient Portal

Opinion piece tries to persuade more patients to partner with the health care team taking care of them.

Some pretty convincing arguments are made by a primary care physician (PCP) about how beneficial patient portals are in an opinion piece in the Philadelphia Inquirer this morning. Jeffrey Millstein, MD, a PVP at Penn Internal Medicine Woodbury Heights (N.J.), makes his pitch to patients about how physicians can always use an extra set of eyes when reviewing patient information, especially if those eyes belong to the patient. Nobody else on the treatment team has as much of a vested interest, that’s for sure.

He calls patient portals a win-win because it’s easier for patients (as opposed to playing phone tag with PCP office staff as a go-between) and allows busy doctors to fit their responses into their schedules.

Millstein uses the metaphor of having work done on your home by a contactor. Most people would not take the contractor’s word that everything’s OK without at least checking out the work.

“We should certainly treat work on our own bodies with a comparable level of scrutiny,” Millstein writes.