perceives the usability of electronic personal health records (PHRs) and, in the process, to increase Canadian patients’ awareness of PHRs and improve physicians’ confidence in their patients’ ability to manage their own health information through PHRs. Design/methodology/approach – The authors surveyed 325 Canadian patients living in Northern Ontario to assess a research model consisting of seven perceptions of PHR systems used to manage personal health information electronically, and to assess their perceived ability to use PHR systems. The survey questions were adapted from the 2014 National Physician Survey in Canada. The authors compared the patients’ results with physicians’ own perceptions of their patients’ ability to use PHR systems. Findings – First, there was a positive relationship between surveyed patients’ prior experiences, needs, values, and their attitude toward adopting the PHR system. Second, how patients saw a PHR system’s user-friendliness was the strongest predictor of how useful they considered it would be. Finally, of the 243 physician respondents, 90.3 percent believed their patients would not be able to manage their own e-health information via a PHR system, but 54.8 percent of the 325 patient respondents indicated they would be able to do so. Originality/value – This study is unique in that the authors know of no other Canadian study that purports to predict, using the technology acceptance model factors, people’s attitudes toward adopting a PHR system. As well, this is the first Canadian study to compare the perspectives of healthcare providers and their patients on e-health applications.