ObjectivesTo determine whether use of a patient portal during hospitalization is associated with improvement in hospital outcomes, 30-day readmissions, inpatient mortality, and 30-day mortality.Materials and MethodsWe performed a retrospective propensity scorematched study that included all adult patients admitted to Mayo Clinic Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, from August 1, 2012, to July 31, 2014, who had signed up for a patient portal account prior to hospitalization (N7538).ResultsOut of the admitted patients with a portal account, 1566 (20.8%) accessed the portal while in the hospital. Compared to patients who did not access the portal, patients who accessed the portal were younger (58.8 years vs 62.3 years), had fewer elective admissions (54.2% vs 64.1%), were more frequently admitted to medical services (45.8% vs 35.2%), and were more likely to have liver disease (21.9% vs 12.9%) and higher disease severity scores (0.653 vs 0.456). After propensity score matching, there was no statistically significant difference between the 2 cohorts with respect to 30-day readmission (P.13), inpatient mortality (P.82), or 30-day mortality (P.082).ConclusionUse of the patient portal in the inpatient setting may not improve hospital outcomes. Future research should examine the association of portal use with more immediate inpatient health outcomes such as patient experience, patient engagement, medication reconciliation, and prevention of adverse events.

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