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Confidentiality, ownership and transfer of medical records (update)

Publication Date
Source
PMC
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Law
  • Medicine
License
Unknown

Abstract

The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) regards medical records as confidential documents, owned by the physician/institution/clinic that compiled them or had them compiled. Patients have a right to medical information contained in their records but not to the documents themselves. The first consideration of the physician is the well-being of the patient, and discretion must be used when conveying information contained in a medical record to a patient. This medical information often requires interpretation by a physician or other health care professional. Other disclosures of information contained in medical records to third parties (eg. physician-to-physician transfer for administrative purposes, lawyer, insurance adjuster) require written patient consent or a court order. CMA is opposed to legislation at any level which threatens the confidentiality of medical records.

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