An elderly woman with a recent hospitalization wants a copy of her medical records. She may be moving closer to her children and wants to bring the records to her new physician. After finding the right person, completing the right forms, and walking to the right place to retrieve her records, she receives a bill for hundreds of dollars along with a paper medical record that seems poorly organized.
In this Viewpoint we tackle 2 questions: (1) Why is it so expensive to get a copy of one’s own paper medical record, and (2) how can the increasing availability of digital medical records improve this situation?
Jaspers AW, Cox JL, Krumholz HM. Copy Fees and Limitation of Patients’ Access to Their Own Medical Records. JAMA Intern Med. Published online January 30, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.8560