Good news: my local hospital has the fanciest, newest, coolest computer system (costing major bucks, of course) and now is routinely sending me "transition of care" documents on my patients.
Bad news: they are horrible.
Seriously, we get several of these documents per day and often can't figure out what the document is about. On the bright side, sometimes after taking 10-20 minutes of looking through the 12-14 page document, we do actually gain some useful information.
Long-time reader, first time writer! I want to know why it is that my doctor makes me pay to get my own medical records. It seems like since they are my records, they should be free to me! Can you explain this to me?
- Lucy in Texas
Thanks, Lucy, for asking such an astute question that is near and dear to my heart.
There is, in fact, a simple answer as to why doctors don't want you to lay hands on their medical records, Lucy. It's the same reason you don't want your son's underwear after his first semester in college (known to have broken autoclaves): they stink.
Why do they stink? It's complicated. The best way to see this answer is to look into the past. Way back.