Patient-Reported Measures Of Psychosocial Issues And Health Behavior Should Be Added To Electronic Health Records
Recent legislation and delivery system reform efforts are greatly expanding the use of electronic health records. For these efforts to reach their full potential, they must actively involve patients and include patient-reported information about such topics as health behavior, preferences, and psychosocial functioning. We offer a plan for including standardized, practical patient-reported measures as part of electronic health records, quality and performance indexes, the primary care medical home, and research collaborations. These measures must meet certain criteria, including being valid, reliable, sensitive to change, and available in multiple languages. Clinicians, patients, and policy makers also must be able to understand the measures and take action based on them. Including more patient-reported items in electronic health records would enhance health, patient-centered care, and the capacity to undertake population-based research.