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Online Health Management with Health Care Technology

written by: Leigh A. Zaykoski • edited by: Anurag Ghosh • updated: 3/30/2011

People are taking on more of a participatory role in their own health care with the advent of several useful online health management tools. Learn how you can use these tools to take control of your own health.

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    Health care technology has brought many advances in medicine to hospitals, clinics, and private practices in the past decade. However, health care technology is also changing the way patients can participate in their health care and stay informed when it comes to health maintenance and treatment options for medical conditions. Online health management is one way that health care technology is improving patient participation in the health care process.

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    Prescription Reminders

    Many physicians struggle with caring for noncompliant patients who just can't remember to take their prescription medications. When treating someone with diabates, high blood pressure, or heart disease, not taking medications as described could lead to critical consequences. Health care technology has come up with an answer to this problem in the form of prescription reminder tools. There are services available that will call you or alert you on a mobile device or computer that your prescription medications can be taken. Patients can choose to receive reminders via telephone, text message, or alert on a handheld organizer or personal digital assistant (PDA). This prescription reminder can help patients remember to take their medications consistently, to receive the maximum treatment benefits of the prescription.

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    Online Health Records

    Online health records are another way for patients to take an active role in managing their own health. Google is now offering online health records that allow you to create a profile that includes your medical conditions, medications, allergies, test results, immunization record, and procedures you have had performed or have scheduled. The interface also allows patients to find a doctor based on location or medical specialty. These online health records can help patients keep their medical information organized and up to date.

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    Pill Identifiers

    The pill identifier is another piece of health care technology that can now be used by non-medical professionals. If you find a pill in your bag, and don't know which bottle it came from, you can use a pill identifier to enter the size, shape, color, or imprint of the pill and identify it.

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    Prescription Scheduling Tools

    Online health care technology makes life much easier for people who must take many medications at different times throughout the day. Since some medications are dosed very specifically, missing one dose or accidentally taking two doses can cause harmful effects. Online prescription scheduling tools allow patients to enter all of their prescription instructions and will develop a pill schedule once all information has been entered.Health care technology is now helping patients to stay safe and help them take on active roles in managing their own health. This can lead to improve outcomes in health care.