By Howard Anderson

The federal government is developing a standard template that vendors can use to describe their personal health record products in an effort to make it easier for consumers to select a PHR.

The "online model" will enable vendors to "convey useful and understandable facts to consumers about their privacy, security and information management policies," according to a February 18 notice in the Federal Register.

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is spearheading the project. The office hopes PHR vendors will use the model to enable consumers to "understand and consistently compare PHR service provider policies," according to the announcement. The hope is that consumers will then use the information when selecting a PHR.

From April through October, the government will test the model with consumers before it’s made available to vendors.

To read the federal register announcement, click here.

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