only. By 2005 MiVIA had expanded to include members of the homeless community. In 2007 four hospitals were using it as an electronic medical record and it had expanded its member rolls to include special needs children.
The resulting PHR, which was designed with input from the members, is Web-based, and compliant with HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). It is now being licensed to hospitals and clinics for use with mobile populations. Additionally, it serves as an affordable electronic health record for small clinics.
When the MiVIA pilot project started in 2003, it had a goal of enrolling 50 migrant workers. That figure quickly became 250, then 300, then 400. Because MiVIA serves a very mobile population of migrant workers who may access many different clinics and health care systems from San Diego all the way up the coast to Alaska, it serves as a bridge among these health systems. It promotes continuity of care and engages and empowers members as active partners in their own health care.
MiVIA stores medical and dental information and provides a photo identification and emergency information card which includes the member’s name, health conditions, the last provider seen, any allergies, and other special information, such as presence of implanted medical devices. MiVIA also includes an e-mail account offering a “permanent” address and provides information and resources with links to other health information resources, primarily to MedLine Plus, but also to some other health websites. Both family and individual memberships are available.
It is interesting to note that 7 out of 10 of the providers engaged in MiVIA had not heard about MedLine Plus before getting involved with MiVIA. Once they learn about it, however, they love it. And it is not only providers who appreciate having the additional information available from MedLine Plus, but members appreciate it as well. One story illustrates the value of this resource. About a year and a half ago, an older gentleman came to the resource center with his daughter. The gentlemen was supposed to take seven medications but the daughter told an outreach worker that, while her father needed the medications, he did not take them. The outreach worker and the daughter sat with the father, logged on to MedLine Plus, looked up every medication, and printed the information in Spanish. That was what was needed to engage the gentleman in his health care so that he took his medication. The small amount of effort required to log into MedLine Plus and retrieve information from it made all the difference in that patient’s care.
MiVIA has a clinician portal for professional entry and verification. A clinician can go to www.mivia.org, sign up as a clinician, and run a test account to check out the system. The log-in is also available in Spanish, although it is somewhat more limited. There are approximately 5,000