You may have received an email invitation to take an online health risk assessment (HRA) or seen an ad for one pop up on social media. If you’ve ever wondered whether you might be a) at risk for certain diseases or conditions; b) a candidate for a certain medical procedure or; (c) had a lingering question about a potential health concern and wanted to find out what a reasonable next step is — an HRA might be right for you. Here are 3 great reasons to take an online health risk assessment.How healthy is your heart? Take the free HRA and find out.
Keep in mind that while a health risk assessment isn’t a replacement for seeing a physician on a regular basis, it can shed additional light on less obvious factors in your overall health. HRAs can help you to:
Identify personal risk factors. Online HRAs offer a fast and effective way to help you understand your risk factors for a number of conditions, such as heart disease, obesity and joint pain. By filling out a short questionnaire, you can get personalized clinical information summarized into a brief, easy-to-understand report. After completing the assessment, your results are typically available via email or to download immediately.
A World Health Organization study found that 60% of factors related to individual health and quality of life are associated with lifestyle. So, while risk factors you have no control over, such as age, race and family history, do play a role in your overall health, your lifestyle choices can have an even bigger impact. Important to note: Even though you may have one or more risk factors for a disease or health condition, that doesn’t automatically mean you will get it. However, knowing your risks and taking steps to decrease them is always a good idea.
Discover next steps. Beyond highlighting your unique risk factors, an HRA can help you make educated choices about your specific health concerns and encourage you to take the next steps. An example might be a recommendation to see an orthopedic specialist for severe or ongoing joint pain that’s affecting your quality of life. Or, someone who has struggled with weight issues may find out that they are a candidate for weight-loss surgery and be given options to follow up with a bariatric specialist to learn more.
We often consider ourselves healthy if we’re not actively sick. While that may be true, there’s always more we can do to take control of our health through preventive measures and healthy choices.
Manage your health trends over time. As you make positive changes on your path to wellness, health risk assessments can help you record your progress over time, enabling you to track your efforts and make corrections along the way.
What information is required to fill out an HRA?
Most HRAs are designed to be very easy to complete, and should only take a few minutes.
Depending on the topic, an HRA may have questions about your general health, personal and family health history, and current medications. You may also be asked to provide information about your tobacco or alcohol use, diet and nutrition, physical activity, and sleep quality.
It may be helpful to have any recent lab reports from your doctor handy before you begin, in order to accurately input a key reading such as your blood pressure or cholesterol. However, in most cases you shouldn’t need to look up a lot of information before filling out the HRA.
That said, it’s important to answer all the questions as completely, honestly and accurately as possible. If you’re concerned about your results and would like to discuss additional tests, screenings or treatment options, sharing the assessment with your doctor is a great place to start.
Medical City Healthcare’s HRAs are fast, free and confidential. If you aren’t sure what your results mean, be sure to talk to a doctor. If you don’t already have one, our online HRA results will provide a number to call and/or a link to our provider database.
Medical City Healthcare provides comprehensive emergency services across North Texas.
At Medical City Healthcare, we’re dedicated to the care and improvement of human life. So, we hope you’ll Take Care!