Monday, September 8, 2014 - 10:40
Patients give up medical records too easily: report
Patient and doctor organizations are blowing the whistle on benefit agencies and health insurers asking unwarrantedly for patients' full medical records. They warn patients that this is not always necessary. The Netherlands Patient Federation (NPCF) and Doctors' Federation (KNMG) say that agencies are disrupting doctor-patient confidentiality, which everyone has a right to, by asking for full records. A poll from the NPCF reveals that this happens in one-third of cases. "You don't have to share your medical records with anyone" says NPCF director Wilna Wind. "That is something between you and your doctor, and definitely not something between you and the occupational health and safety service or the benefits agency." The organizations want patients to know that they can tell their doctors everything, and that only those details that are very necessary for agencies to know should be shared. They also want to make clear agreements with the agencies who ask for full records unnecessarily.