Posts Tagged ‘medical records’

A recent  AMA News article pointed out that most doctors can’t yet access medical records through their smart phone.

Wow …  I remember using a slide rule, needing a dime and a pay phone to make a telephone call, and being amazed at the new technology that allowed me to make a call by pressing buttons instead of turning a dial. Technology is advancing so fast that  it seems we have come to take for granted that we should have instant access to all sorts of information — even medical records.

Today, a friend gave me a sheet of little happy face stickers.  I wanted to get more, so I looked up the catalog number printed on the sheet, found them on Google in about 26 seconds, and had ordered them within two  minutes.  Amazing.  I’m sure it won’t be long before I can look up a patient’s lab test results — better yet, a graph of their current and past lab test results — within seconds from anywhere in the world.

It’s exciting to be a part of technological advances.  At DrScore.com, we make information on doctors easily available and accessible — right at  your fingertips.  You can search for doctors in your area by specialty, get their contact information and even see how they’ve been rated.  And how much does all this cost?  It’s free.

Ah, the modern world.  It may not be perfect, but we should count our blessings.

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In a July 14 blog, Medical Justice founder and malpractice protection champion Jeffrey Segal, MD, JD, explains why medical malpractice suits don’t help.

“If I touch a hot stove and burn my hand, I learn not to touch a hot stove again. Painful lesson, but lesson learned. How does this make our lives worse? When a person gets burned, whatever the reason, that person will naturally avoid that stimulus in the future. If that person is a doctor, and that stimulus is a frivolous lawsuit, the future behavior will be to avoid that stimulus (the frivolous suit) by ‘protecting themselves’ via defensive medicine.”

Dr. Segal makes a great point about frivolous lawsuits.  The resulting defensive medicine has been reported to cost us up to several billion dollars a year.

But what about the lawsuits that aren’t frivolous? Will patients and doctors learn from the mistakes that resulted in real harm to patients? Malpractice lawyer Patrick Malone offers advice in his blog to help people avoid putting themselves in situations that could result in a needless adverse outcome. Malone points out that step one is for patients to get and read their medical records.

I wonder how many problems would be averted if patients made a point to get, read and keep a file of their medical records. For some reason, it just isn’t a part of our culture. I have to admit, I probably keep a better file of records on the work that has been done on my car than I keep on my own medical care. This culture will change. It has to in order to better assure the quality of our medical care.

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