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Most doctors don't believe patients need full access to health records

Most doctors don't believe patients need full access to health records

A survey of 3,700 doctors from Australia, Canada, England, France, Germany, Singapore, Spain and the United States showed consistent beliefs regarding what access patients should have to their medical records. While 4 percent said patients should have no access at all, 82% wanted patients to update their records. However, only 31% reckoned patients should have full access.

From the above:

Dr. Eric Topol, chief academic officer of Scripps Health, took aim at the medical community at the HIMSS conference, calling for an end to paternal medicine -- where only the physician has access to healthcare information -- and the beginning of a time when patients own their data.

"You have a doctor-patient relationship that today is based on asymmetry. A lot of information to the doctor, very little for the patient," he said. "We're about having ... information parity. That's exciting. We can get away from this superiority of physicians to patients. That has got to go."

Mark Knickrehm, global managing director of Accenture Health, said many physicians believe patients should take an active role in managing EMRs since doing so fosters a sense of ownership, and it allows both the doctor and patient to track results outside of scheduled appointments.


3 Replies

I have full access to my health records..but don't bother with them. I feel not knowing in some cases is better than knowing.



I have relatively good access and that is enough: but the above is a horribly complex argument.

In a business, does the CEO/management want full access to all data: no, they want interpretation based upon someone's knowledge/interpretation of the full data. They don't have time/knowledge to understand, complex IT-speak, engineering/science techno-babble or marketing waffle! So relationship IS asymmetric.

So, I think more important to have good relationship with doctor, and you jointly decide what info you see (and patient is a full participant in this decision, not what doctor decides) and doctor helps interpret/answer patient questions: it is up to us to ask sensible questions.



Hi Drs have medical training for very good reasons. However, access to things like blood test and blood pressure results do allow a patient to be more aware of their health and can foster a more healthier lifestyle.


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