As one of the newest members of CommonWell, we at ADVault believe that health data should be available to individuals and caregivers regardless of where care occurs. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, never has this been more relevant. But what does this mean for patients? Health care is complicated, and the complexities of health data exchange are no exception. The good news is there are things patients can do to improve their experience and empower themselves and their providers with enhanced access to their health care data. 

Familiarize yourself with your health history

While there has been considerable progress in exchanging clinical health data—especially in times of crisis—there is no guarantee that a provider you or a loved one seeks care from will have your complete health history at the point of care. If possible, review and/or compile relevant health records to speed up the health history portion of your health care visits.

Identify mobile apps or online tools to help

Today, mobile apps are available to help you retrieve and organize your health care data.  In fact, two CommonWell members, Replete® and OneRecord™, offer patient portal and personal health record applications to make it possible.

Find out if your provider is connected to CommonWell & enroll

If your primary care provider is part of a care provider site connected to the CommonWell network, they will be able to seamlessly pull your relevant health data from other participating providers you have visited in the past—depending on what electronic health record system they use. To enroll, it’s as easy as asking during your next visit! You can find more information about the services and process at

Establish an Advance Care Plan

As I said in my CommonWell TV interview in early March: “This isn’t all about death and dying, this is critically important in terms of having a patient’s plan known.” If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that preparation is key. Formalize and communicate your medical directive wishes to your loved ones so they are prepared to make decisions on your behalf if you are facing a medical crisis and unable to do so.