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McKesson Canada

The healthcare system in Canada is very provider oriented.  In other words, the system is designed to maximize the efficiency of the healthcare system at the expense of the patient.  Patient’s routinely arrive for a 10am appointment, only to wait for an hour to actually see their physician.  When a lab test is done the patient is told they’ll only be contacted if the result is abnormal.  Consequently, they wait anxiously wondering if perhaps someone forgot to phone them. McKesson Canada launched a business called RelayHealth to address the patient experience.  RelayHealth is a software-as-a-service that provides a personal health record, secure communication between patients and healthcare providers, lab result disctribution, e-referrals, and a longitudinal electronic health record that spans all of a patients care team. Since this solution is changing how healthcare is delivered, McKesson needed some public investment to fund a project to prove the impact of having a more patient-centric system.  Canada Health Infoway agreed to fund the Province of Nova Scotia’ Personal Health Record project (PHR).  The PHR project allows patients to receive the lab results, book appointments with their physicians, ask clinical questions via secure messaging and receive referrals. The project had a target of 3,000 patients by March 31, 2014.  The patient uptake has been twice as fast as expected.  As of July 15, 2013, more than 3,000 patients are accessing the PHR.  In addition, focus groups have been held with patients and the feedback is extremely strong with patients highlighting the convenience of accessing their lab results and booking appointments. Infoway’s investment in this project has allowed McKesson to prove that a vision of a more patient-centred system is strongly desired by patients and benefits the system overall.  This will allow McKesson to sell this solution in other provinces in Canada and kickstart the RelayHealth business.