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Health Records: Striving for Transparency

by Michelle Andrews

Kaiser Health News

Article excerpt

Push On To Make Transparent Medical Records The National Standard Of Care

Perched on an exam table at the doctor’s office watching the clinician type details about their medical problems into their file, what patient hasn’t wondered exactly what the doctor is writing? As many as 50 million patients may have a chance to find out in the next few years, following the announcement this week of $10 million in new grants to expand the OpenNotes project, which works with medical providers to expand patient access to clinician notes.

Our take

Making “Nothing About Me Without Me” A Reality

“Nothing about me without me” has been a healthcare mantra for a number of years, fueled by Donald Berwick, the IHI, and numerous other healthcare organizations. But the promise of transparency has languished somewhat. This recent announcement may change all of that. Will $10 million in new grants help to make the OpenNotes project a reality for all?

It remains to be seen. A number of healthcare organizations already allow patients access to their medical records. Results indicate that this transparency can lead to better outcomes. Widespread adoption is hindered, however, by provider reluctance in some cases. Gain provider acceptance and forward movement is virtually assured.