Electronic medical record concept New rules would provide patients access to information such as doctors’ notes, imaging scans and data on genetic testing–without having to schedule an appointment with their health care provider to see it. (Image: Shutterstock)

Anyone who’s ever tried to get medical records moved from one doctor or health plan to another—or even access specific details of their own record—know what a frustrating, if not downright impossible, task it can be. New proposed rules from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services would open the gates, so to speak, on the availability of patient information—not just to patients but also to doctors, other providers and insurers.

Patients are often still reduced to trotting between doctors’ offices with files, films and discs containing everything from diagnoses and treatment records to X-rays and scans, and some entities on the other side of the table restrict information or charge to provide it.

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Marlene Satter

Marlene Y. Satter has worked in and written about the financial industry for decades.

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