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Just Who Can See Your Medical Record?


Posted on July 11, 2014

Medical RecordWe live in a voyeuristic society were many people seem to care a great deal about what’s going on in the lives of others. Many may think that this voyeurism extends only to those in the public eye, and that the life of a celebrity is justly subject to scrutiny given that celebrities have placed themselves in that position. Yet many of those same people may be surprised to learn that it’s not just celebrities whose lives are under the proverbial microscope. Many seemingly ordinary, average people can become the target of another person’s or agency’s interest. What’s even more surprising is the amount of personal information that these inquiring minds can have access to.

Understanding Who Has Access

The information in your medical record ranks among the most important personal information in your life. As such, you probably have a strict preference on who can and cannot see it. While you are provided some protection under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), there are certain parties who are allowed access to your medical record. There are many false notions out there about just who can see such records. Listed below are parties that many question as to whether or not they have access to medical records, if they truly do have access, and how they may use that information:

  • Clinicians: Doctors, nurses, and other health care providers typically have uninhibited access to your medical record. This access is of course given to help them in providing the highest level of care available to you.
  • Family: While parents and guardians have access to records of minors listed as being under their care, any other family members or relations can only get access to such information with permission. Should you wish, you can give another family member medical power of attorney to see your record and make decisions on your behalf.
  • Insurers: Your health insurance company is given access to your medical record, but only after you provide your healthcare provider’s name in your application for coverage.
  • Government agencies: Federal agencies may get access to your medical record for the purpose of verifying availability for Social Security benefits, or for the collection of vital statistics.
  • Employers: HIPAA prohibits an employer from asking to view your record without your permission. However, an employer is within its rights to request a doctor’s note to verify sick leave.

Information regarding your health and well-being is deeply personal, and most hope that it remains such. It’s often not enough just to know who may have access to your medical record. In order to truly safeguard your privacy, you really want to have as much control over the access of such information as possible. OrderMedicalRecords.com offers you that level of control by giving you instant access to online copies of your medical records. Call 800.765.7510 to learn about how we can put your medical record information right at your fingertips, allowing you to better monitor who you allow to see such information.

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