Beneficiaries of Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center are now able to communicate online with their primary care provider through secure messaging.

This capability will, for the first time, provide patients the ability to communicate directly with their provider and care teams and allow care teams a two-way flow of communication with individual patients or groups of patients.

The U.S. Army Medical Command is implementing the use of the Army Medicine Secure Messaging Service by offering it to 100 percent of beneficiaries who receive care in the “direct care” system by the end of 2014.

The service is a web-based, secure messaging application that provides a comprehensive set of services designed to allow patients and their health care team to communicate securely and conveniently. The application works like an online secure banking website, so beneficiaries can be assured of the integrity of their personal health care information.

Patients of Killeen Medical Home, Harker Heights Medical Home, Copperas Cove Medical Home, Thomas Moore Health Clinic, Russell Collier Health Clinic, Bennett Health Clinic and the Family Medical Residency Clinic can sign up for the secure messaging service.

Dr. Terry Newton, information technology clinical capability manager with the Medical Command, said the service “is an easy-to-use secure communication tool that has the potential to significantly impact care to beneficiaries by engaging them in convenient ways and times to build relationships, improve access to information and reduce the need for so many visits to their primary care clinic.

“Secure messaging is a critical tool in helping Army medicine achieve the (Military Health System) quadruple aim of improving the patient’s experience, and improving population health and readiness while reducing per capita costs,” Newton said.

With online services, patients can book appointments, request and review lab/test results, request medication refills, request a referral, email their physician a question and schedule web visits with their provider.

Additionally, patients will have access to a fully integrated electronic personal health record and an extensive collection of multimedia educational content. Army Medicine’s goal is to provide the secure messaging service to all beneficiaries who receive care in military treatment facilities by the end of 2014.

To register for online services, beneficiaries should go to their health care team administrator or call their primary care clinic.

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