The paper describes the implementation of an Ict innovation within the healthcare system which puts patients at the centre of a new device for the storage and management of health data; a system called the Personal Health Record (Phr) in the literature. The Phr is a technological innovation which redefines the citizen’s role vis-à-vis the traditional healthcare system. The citizen, in fact, is no longer the object described in documents exchanged among doctors; rather, s/he is the actor most closely involved in the flow of his/her health information within the network of carers, the purpose being to ensure the best possible care. The fieldwork, which lasted for around two years, made it possible to reconstruct and analyse the transition whereby this technology has passed from the initial ideation to the tangible concreteness of its trialling. The paper uses the metaphor of "coming out in society" - an event typical of the receptions and balls organized by the noble classes in the modern age - in order to reflect on how newly-developed Ict systems enter the heterogeneous arena of resident information systems and intersect with other, pre-existing systems endowed with specific political ‘capacities’.
Keywords: Personal Health Record, Healthcare, Etnography, Institutional Innovation, medical practices, design practices