Storing Health Care Directives Online
More Americans than ever store and provide information through digital apps on smartphones and tablet devices. Whether engaging in online banking, using a mobile plane boarding pass, or creating work calendars shared in the cloud, the internet of things provides needed connectivity. Yet critical medical information, health care directives, and other essential legal documents tend to remain in older storage formats such as paper files or on-site at a hospital or doctor’s office. The American Bar Association website displays and recommends an app called Mind Your Loved Ones (MYLO) that provides access to this critical information 24/7.
The app allows you to send information directly to health care providers, whether they be an insurance company, doctor, hospital, or trusted friend or family members, via email, text, fax, or print. Information is not stored in the cloud but locally on the user's tablet or smartphone for enhanced security. A mobile app like MYLO falls under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) scope because it handles personal health information (PHI). The information you want resides on your smartphone, and MYLO has no access to the user's profile beyond an email address and registered name.
Whether traveling for work, leisure, or living in a retirement community, you can securely store your and your family's health care advance directives, key medical information like prescriptions, physician contacts, medical notes, and insurance information. There is no need to hunt for paper files or sign onto a website to obtain the information, and you can create as many individual profiles on the app as you want. This immediate access to critical information allows your trusted agent to immediately answer difficult questions that an emergency room or other healthcare professionals ask, creating better health outcomes.
Because you can create an unlimited number of profiles, you can use MYLO to store information on your aging parents, yourself, spouse, siblings, children, and even friends. Each profile automatically generates reports that can be shared electronically with the desired recipient. Insurance information includes copies of both sides of insurance cards. Event notes, routine appointments, prescription changes, activities of daily living, and vital signs can all be maintained and measured over time. A dropbox is available to backup, share, and restore profiles, so even if you accidentally delete or damage a profile, it can be easily recreated. An annual subscription service to MYLO is less than ten dollars.
Other apps provide a format to carry your medical history and records on your phone; however, these apps do not combine legal documents as part of the app. MYLO provides ways to track medical, legal, and other information seamlessly in one app, which is a big plus when under duress to provide information to help yourself or a loved one. Remember that you default your or your loved one's decision-making to hospital authority without proper legal documentation to make medical decisions.
Keeping all of this critical information current is easy by simply uploading new forms, medical information, insurance data, and legal documents to the app. You will not have to guess which prescription information or legal document is most current as all data storage is by date. A medical doctor can even review previous to current medications to make assessments based on health responses to those prescription changes.
The MYLO app does not mean you have to give up your paperwork if you still like that hard copy in a file cabinet somewhere. Many older individuals like covering all bases with both the standard paper file format and the MYLO app. Time is precious when you or someone you love is experiencing an adverse health event. Quick and easy access to reliable health and legal documentation can help drive the best possible outcome for the situation at hand.
If you or a loved one do not yet have health care directives or powers of attorney for financial decisions, we can help. It’s important to have proper legal advice on what options to choose, and to make sure the document fully represents your wishes. If you’d like to discuss this in more detail, please don’t hesitate to reach out. For more information and further inquiries about your personal situation, please contact our office at 302.651.0113.