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How to Retrieve Medical Records|Benefits of Retrieving Medical Records|Guide to Medical Records Retrieval

Medical records are essential to every patient; therefore, it is vital for a patient to be in a position to get their records when they need them. Patients can have access to their medical record in various ways, electronically or through papers. The federal law states that patients have the right to get copies of their records whether in electronic health records or paper copies.

The following are some of the factors that one needs to consider when they want to retrieve their medical records. For one to access their medical records, they first need to be patients of the hospital. On the other hand, one can send their parents or guardians to access their medical records from the hospital. Before the patient`s parents or guardians are issued with the medical records, they need to obtain written permission from the patents. In some cases, the caregivers can also be allowed to access the patient`s records when they provide written permission.

Patients can request for their medical records from the following medical providers, these include hospitals, laboratories, doctors as well as other medical practitioners. The duration for keeping the medical records vary from one place to another. patients can access their medical records from the hospital practitioners; however, there are some records that the providers will not share with the patients. Some records are crucial hence the need to keep them as secretive as possible, for instance, those related to mental health are not shared with the patients. Such records are kept as private as possible more so when the provider feels or believes that allowing the patient to access the records can endanger their physical health.

There are instances in which the medical records will not be disclosed to the patient. Besides, one may not access the following reports including psychotherapy reports, those that may endanger their safety and life, as well as the records that have names of other people or person and the patient`s access to the records, can cause harm to the people whose names appeared in the record. Other than psychotherapy reports, the patient can also be denied access to information whose source are confidential and their request will tamper with the confidentiality of the report.

Patients need to make a formal application before they are allowed to access their medical records. The records can be accessed first by making a request through phone call or by making an informal request during consultation. Due to the difficulties in handling the paper records stored in files, most hospital are shifting from the paper form to the electronic online medical reports retrieval system. The online records retrieval systems are much easier to keep the files in an organized form hence making it easier to access them. In addition, the systems are much easier to use and the reports can be sent directly to the patient`s email when they need them.

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