Google is collaborating with Cleveland Clinic, Ohio to start a new medical record service which allows patients at the Cleveland clinic to digitalize their personal health records and store these records online. Each patient’s health profile or health information which includes his medical histories, allergies, prescriptions, etc will be protected by a password. These patients can retrieve their medical information online via Google’s service. However, this sensitive health information is purely restricted to the record owner and it will not be opened to the general public.

The concept of online medical record service is not new to net users. It is quite similar to Health Vault, a medical search engine introduced by Microsoft last year. With Microsoft Health Vault, net users can store their medical information online and freely search for medical information such as medical guide, health information; articles, etc. (Read more about Health Vault via the link here). Microsoft HealthVault does not seem to be successful after it was launched. Many users feel uncomfortable to digitalize their medical record and store this sensitive information online.

Under the collaboration arrangement, the Cleveland Clinic will invite between 1,500 and 10,000 of its patients to participate in this beta service provided by Google. Participants in the trial will be able to exchange data about their prescriptions, conditions and allergies between their Cleveland Clinic record and a “secure Google profile” in a live clinical delivery setting, the hospital group said. With the data accessible in this way, patients will be able to share it with different doctors, service providers and pharmacies, according to the hospital group.

Google treats its venture into health-records management as a logical extension of its search engine business. According to Google, there are millions of requests from people trying to find about more information about injuries, illnesses or treatments. Google foresees the health-records management service will generate substantial businesses in near future.