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Who Really Owns Your Medical Records?

Updated: Oct 9, 2021

The traditional teaching says that the doctor or medical facility owns the actual record but

the patient owns the information contained in it. Even so, a patient cannot just demand the doctor

or medical facility hand over the file to them. The Health Insurance Portability and

Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPPA) is a federal statute that protects individuals' medical records

and other personal health information. However, it has made it even more difficult for patients as

well as their primary care providers to get those records.

Today, most systems provide patients access to information through a web portal. It

shows a list of a person’s health conditions in easily understandable terms, lists medications they

are currently taking, and includes lab and imaging study results, as well as recommended health

measures. Regardless of who owns their medical records, when patients’ health records are

readily accessible, they become more aware and engaged and engaged patients are healthier


#PhysicalExam #StayInformed

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