The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and CVS are collaborating to promote an online tool that provides recommendations for the personalized preventive services patients should receive based on their age and gender.
Many of these preventive services are available to patients at MinuteClinic and CVS/pharmacy locations, as well as at their physician's office, and many are now covered by most insurance without additional co-pays or other cost sharing under the Affordable Care Act. The recommendations, officials say, come from government-recognized clinical experts.
Announced this week at Health Datapolooza 2015 in Washington, D.C., CVS Health says it is the first national partner to work with HHS to take advantage of the technology-based tools, developed within the Department by the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, which make it possible for the myhealthfinder tool to be available on MinuteClinic.com and at www.cvs.com/myhealthfinder.
Commonly recommended preventive services available at MinuteClinic include blood pressure checks, cholesterol screenings, wellness counseling and routine vaccinations. In a blog post accompanying the announcement, Acting Assistant Secretary for Health (ASH) and National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) Karen DeSalvo, M.D. said, “Our collaboration with CVS Health was made possible by one of our projects that has been an example of innovation in the federal government since 1997. Nearly two decades ago, healthfinder.gov was the first government website designed to share health information with consumers and improve health literacy. Since then, the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion within HHS has developed the current healthfinder.gov website into a trusted, credible source for easy-to-understand prevention and wellness information. Through myhealthfinder, an interactive tool available on the website, you can enter your age, sex, and pregnancy status to receive customized wellness and prevention information along with steps you can take with your provider and at home to prevent illnesses and improve your health.”
What’s more, DeSalvo said, “To make myhealthfinder more readily available to more people, we recently developed a free, publically available application programming interface (API) to integrate the tool into any website. The API imports up-to-date information directly from healthfinder.gov. This tool supports physicians and the care team, and is an easy way to help people understand the recommended preventive services that are often available to them at no out of pocket cost thanks to the Affordable Care Act,” DeSalvo said.