• United States
Senior Editor

Dell partners with WebMD for employee e-health records

Apr 10, 20063 mins
Data CenterEnterprise

Dell Monday said it will soon begin offering its U.S. employees personal health records available online with regularly updated pharmacy and medical claim information.

Dell employees will be able to easily import their health records to a Web-based system, and Dell will be one of the first large companies in the U.S. to offer regularly updated electronic health records, Dell officials said.

Dell employees will have access to the new e-health records, offered in collaboration with WebMD, later this month, company officials said. The e-health records program, part of a larger health and wellness program at Dell, will be voluntary and free for Dell’s 25,000 U.S. employees. Dell did not disclose the cost of the new program.

“We know that improving our healthcare system isn’t just the responsibility of government or our care providers,” said Linda Rebrovick, vice president of Dell’s healthcare business. “The employers and businesses have to play their part as well.”

Dell has offered personal health records to its employees since 2004, but the new claims-import capability makes those records more convenient through automatic and secure import of medical claims information, Dell said. The tool allows employees to track and manage their data on procedures, conditions and medications from multiple sources, including doctors, hospitals and pharmacies, Dell said.

“We want our employees to better understand their benefits and get the right care at the right time at the right place,” said Kathleen Angel, director of Dell’s global benefits program.

Employees will be able to go into the Well at Dell Web portal and check information such as diagnoses and prescriptions written during past doctor’s visits, Dell said. The Web portal will be able to track patients’ surgical and prescription histories, and reminders for scheduled doctor’s visits or medical procedures. The new portal will “make it easier for us to take ownership and control our own health information,” Rebrovick said.

Dell markets its computer hardware to healthcare organizations. The company hopes its use of e-health records will spur other companies to explore the technology, Rebrovick said. Other IT vendors, including IBM and Cisco, have also announced employee e-health record services in the past year.

Many IT vendors have embraced U.S. President George Bush’s call for every U.S. resident to have an e-health record available by 2014. Bush first endorsed e-health records as a way to cut down medical errors and reduce medical costs in a January 2004 address.

Dell officials announced the Web-based health records at a healthcare IT forum its cosponsoring in Nashville.