See Your Psych Records

Though not so easy to accomplish, follow the advice in this recent WSJ article, and demand access to your medical records. The law says you can. Look for errors,  get any help you need to understand them, and submit corrections.

Our medical records should all exist in one place in the cloud. With so many records available online the “P” in HIPAA (for portability) should transform to another “A” -- for Accessibility. Until then you will have to apply separately to every provider who has cared for you.

Challenges:

  • Determining that you have seen the entire record: How do you know they did not leave something out? Ask for attestation of completeness.
  • Seeing the real thing: If the record exists in a computer server, a bunch of “pages” will not faithfully replicate it. Demand to see the record with a computer. You will need an expert to guide you.
  • Getting help to understand the record.
  • Looking for hidden errors as well as the obvious: If you find errors, know that providers should never change the records, but they can add notations.

Believe it or not, some providers still fail to keep recorders, and others may destroy them after a specific period of time.

 

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