Patient Gateway Frequently Asked Questions
Please click on a topic to see the list of frequently asked questions, and click on a question to see an answer.
Enrollment Process and Account Maintenance
I just completed the steps for enrolling in Patient Gateway. Now what?
- I enrolled online
If you enrolled online and successfully completed the 'Get Access Now' process, then log in with the username and password you created during enrollment. You are all set!
- I enrolled online, but did not complete the ‘Get Access Now’ process
If you enrolled online but did not complete the ‘Get Access Now’ process, your enrollment request was submitted to the enrollment staff for processing. They may contact you to confirm your identity. You will then receive a one-time-use Access Key by US Postal mail. You will need the username and password you created when you enrolled, plus the Access Key, the first time you log in.
- I enrolled at my doctor’s office
If you enrolled at your provider's office, you will receive an Access Key by US Postal mail and your username by email.
Can I receive a hint if I have forgotten my password?
Due to security regulations, staff are unable to share a Password or Access Key over the phone or in an e-mail.
To receive a forgotten Password or Access Key, you can either:
1. Use the "Forgot Username or Password?" link on the Patient Gateway login screen
2. Request a "hint" by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
3. Request that it be mailed to you. Send an email to email@example.com saying you forgot your password (or Access Key) and requesting that it be mailed to your address on file. You will be mailed a one-time-use Access Key as a temporary password. You will be prompted to create a new password once you log in.
How can I recover my password?
You can recover your password by using the "Forgot Username or Password?"
link. Click here to recover your password.
Once you have completed this process, your password will be sent to you via e-mail. Please check your e-mail account for a message from Patient Gateway containing this information.
If you cannot find the email with your password, or you already deleted the email, please go through the Password Recovery steps again, and look for the e-mail. It usually takes a few minutes to arrive in your Inbox, but delivery could be delayed depending on server traffic.
What is my Access Key? How does it differ from my Password?
Your Access Key is used only once - before you use your password. Your password is used many times (after you use your Access Key). The Access Key is mailed to you via US Postal mail when your Patient Gateway account is first created, or if you try but are unable to recover your Patient Gateway password. Your password (along with your username) allows you to access Patient Gateway securely as many times as you like. Be sure to keep your password secure.
If you signed up at your provider's office and do not have a password, please enter the Access Key in the password field to log in for the first time. You will be asked to create a password, which can be used for future logins.
I need to set up a secret question
When you log in, you will be prompted to set up a "Secret Question & Answer". This will allow you to use the "Forgot Password?" link next time you lose or forget your password.
How do I add/delete a doctor from my Patient Gateway account?
You are able to add/ change your provider in Patient Gateway as well as remove a physician that is no longer a current provider.
Please go to www.patientgateway.org and log in with your username and password.
1. Click "Providers" from the menu bar at the top of the screen.
2. Under ‘Providers’ on the left side of the screen, click the ‘Add New’ button.
3. Select your new provider or additional provider from the list (if your provider is not listed, then they are not currently participating in the Patient Gateway).
4. Click the ‘Add Selected Provider’ Button.
5. Click ‘Submit’ at the bottom of the screen to save your changes.
If you only have one provider listed in your profile, please note that you CAN NOT remove that provider from your account until you have added a new provider. Once you have added a new provider, the ‘Remove’ button will become active and you can then remove one of the providers from your profile.
How do I add a pharmacy to my Patient Gateway account?
Note that you cannot add a pharmacy to "My Profile" if it does not exist in our database of pharmacies.
However, you can add that pharmacy in Step 2 of the "Prescription Renewal" Form.
1. Sign into Patient Gateway.
2. Click Requests.
3. Click Prescription.
4. Select the Medication to renew, click Renew.
5. Complete Step 1.
6. Click Next.
7. In step 2, under "Select a Pharmacy":
- Click "Other Pharmacy".
- Enter the Pharmacy info in the appropriate fields.
Your pharmacy will EVENTUALLY be available in the central database. The steps listed above will allow you to submit your request in the meantime.
Communication with the Doctor's Office
How do I change my email address?
To change your e-mail address in Patient Gateway, please follow the instructions below.
1. Go to www.patientgateway.org.
2. Log in with your username and password.
3. Click 'Account' in the top right corner of the screen.
4. Enter your new e-mail address under the "User Mail Settings" section.
5. Click 'Submit' at the bottom of the screen to save your changes.
Will I still be able to call my physician's office?
Absolutely. Patient Gateway is designed to make it easier for you and your
doctor's office to take care of routine matters. You can always pick up the phone
to make a call if you wish. Patient Gateway does not replace current methods of
communicating with your doctor, but rather provides an additional venue.
How do I email my doctor's office?
To send an email message to your practice provider, follow the steps below:
1. Go to www.patientgateway.org
2. Log in with your username and password
3. Click "Mail"
4. Click the "Write" button (right side of screen)
5. If needed, select the “Office” of your provider
6. At the "About" prompt, make a selection
7. In the "Subject Line", enter subject text
8. Just below the patient name, click in the light-colored box and type your message
9. When you are done writing your message, click "Send"
The message will be sent to a practice mailbox. A staff member at the practice will forward your message to your physician. A copy of the message will remain in your “Sent” folder.
Tips for Viewing Lab Results
What test results are shown on Patient Gateway?
If a test result is found on the list of “released test results”, and it is available for display, it is shown in Patient Gateway.
- The most recent value of a result is shown on the “Results Summary” page.
- The test name, result, units, reference range, and date of the result are shown.
- A result of "Pending" means that the result is not yet available to the doctor's office or to Patient Gateway.
- Some results may take hours to process, while others may take days or weeks to process.
- Please do not contact your doctor's office for more information about a Pending result, since the office will not have any additional information about the result. Instead, please check back later for more result information.
- A result of "Available on <date>" means that the results will be available on Patient Gateway soon, but are not yet shown due to Partners Healthcare policy. This policy determines the length of time before a result is displayed in Patient Gateway (regardless of the value of the result). Many routine test results are available immediately, and many are available after a few days. Some test results may be blocked (see list of excluded results for details).
- A (#) next to a result means the laboratory has noted either a change from a previous result or a new result that is out of reference range. A doctor or nurse is best able to interpret the meaning of the result and the reason for the (#) indicator, if present.
Which results are available, and when?
Most results are available online to view and print using Patient Gateway.
On rare occasions posting of test results will be delayed due to technical reasons.
There is a list of excluded results that are not available online.
The Partners Clinical Content Committee, based on recommendations from clinical leaders approves each result shown in Patient Gateway.
Why are some results not shown in Patient Gateway?
- Some results may not be released in Patient Gateway because of legal restrictions or because the results require interpretation by your clinician. For example, Patient Gateway delays releasing genetic test results and cancer markers since counseling is needed for test interpretation.
- Any result or report that is not shown in Patient Gateway can be requested through your doctor's office.
What should I do if I have concerns about a test result?
- Refer to information from your doctor (such as a Results Letter) that explains the test results. Physician test result letters may take several weeks to reach you, especially if some of the results take time to process. If you feel that information from your doctor’s office explaining your results is overdue, please contact your doctor or nurse for more information.
- You can use Patient Gateway to contact your doctor or nurse with your concerns.
What do my results mean?
Your doctor or nurse is most able to help you to interpret your results. Your doctor or nurse usually reviews your results soon after they are available. Test results may take several days or weeks to be processed by the laboratory. A physician letter is usually sent once all test results are available.
What if I have questions about my result?
For non-urgent questions about a result, please allow time for your doctor to review the result and contact you before you contact them. Many results are only reviewed after all tests have been completed, which can take several days to several weeks.
After allowing time for physician review, you can contact your doctor's office in the most comfortable and convenient way for you - using Patient Gateway for secure online messaging, or by telephone, or by arranging an office visit to review and discuss the results.
How do I find general information about a result?
- For your convenience, a link to general information about a test, why it is usually performed and what it commonly measures is available by using the "i" icon near the result name.
- This is general information only, and is not specific to your health situation or your doctor's interpretation of a test result.
- Often there is a great deal of information about test results on the Internet using general search tools. Please be aware that this information should be viewed with care, since it may not be accurate or specific to your situation.
- Test information found on the Lab Tests Online website and elsewhere on the internet is not created or maintained by Partners Healthcare.
- There are some rarely ordered tests that will not have a link to general information. The will not be present near the result name. Please contact your clinician for information about these tests.
What does the reference range for a result mean?
A result may be "in reference" or "out of reference". The reference range for a result is just one of many tools used to assist in the interpretation of a result. Your doctor, based on your specific medical history and the clinical issues being addressed, best interprets a specific test result.
How will I hear from my doctor about my test results?
- Doctor or nurse interpretations of your results are usually communicated to you by phone, by letter, by Patient Gateway, or during an office visit.
- It can take days or weeks for your physician or nurse to review your results and create an interpretation. Some results take time to be processed, and may cause delays before your physician or nurse is able to view all completed results. Please allow time for this before contacting your physician about results.
What if I have questions about the Results feature in Patient Gateway?
For questions about your results, please contact your doctor's office. For questions about the results feature and how it works, please contact your doctor's office or use the Patient Gateway feedback option to send a product question or technical question to the Patient Gateway team.
System Requirements and Troubleshooting
What is required to use Patient Gateway?
To ensure you have the best experience using Patient Gateway and get the most current security features to protect your personal and account information online, we ask that you have:
- For PC using Windows 2000, XP, Vista, or Windows 7
- Internet Explorer 6.0 or higher
- Firefox 18.104.22.168 or higher
- Safari 3.0 or higher
- For Macintosh using OSX 10.4 or higher
- Firefox 22.214.171.124 or higher
- Safari 3.0 or higher
Patient Gateway is best viewed at 1024x768 screen resolution
Is my system compatible with Patient Gateway?
The Compatibility Check below shows whether the current Operating System (OS), Browser, or Browser version is certified for use with Patient Gateway.
Patient Gateway Compatibility Check
This computer setup:
Can I use Patient Gateway with Macintosh, Firefox or Safari?
Before 2008, Patient Gateway was not certified for use on a Macintosh computer or Safari or Firefox web browser. Also, a downloaded ActiveX component had to be installed on the PC as part of the Mail Center application. With the current release, Patient Gateway is certified for use on both IBM-based PC’s and Macintosh computers that meet the system requirements shown above.
Can I use the back button?
Due to the secure nature of the Patient Gateway website, please avoid using the Back button. All navigation can be performed from the links within Patient Gateway.
View and pay my bills
How do I access the billing area?
If your provider uses on-line billing capability, you will see a menu option labeled "View/Pay Bills"
- Go to www.patientgateway.org
- Log in with your username and password
- Click 'View/Pay Bills' to the right of 'Health Library'
- You will be taken to the secure site to view and pay your bill
Who do I contact if I have a question about my bill?
To send a secure email message to Patient Accounts, follow these steps below:
- Go to www.patientgateway.org
- Log in with your username and password
- Click "Mail"
- Do one of the following:
- Reply to any message from Patient Accounts
- Click the "Write" button (right side of the screen) and, if needed, select the "Patient Accounts" from the Office drop-down list
- In the Subject line, enter a brief subject, e.g., 'my bill' or 'my last payment'
- Just below the patient name, click the light-colored box and type your message
- Please include the following information from your bill:
Statement #, Date of Bill, Date of Service, etc.
- When you are done writing your message, click "Send"
The message will be sent to the Patient Accounts mailbox.
A staff member from billing will answer your questions.
A copy of your message will remain in your 'Sent' folder.