Cali-Forks: ownership of medical records

rudy rouhana
Mon, 15 Oct 2001 11:29:53 -0700 (PDT)

I believe in Indiana, which is probably the same across the board, you can
request a copy of your medical records, but the original charts, x-rays, etc.
are the property of the physician.  While he is your doctor, you are also his
patient.  For up to a certain period of time, it is my understanding that he is
legally obligated to keep medical records, regardless of the status of the
patient (even death).

The circumstance they might be trying to avoid is this:

- You walk in and take your medical records, leaving the physician with

- 2 years later, you decide to file a malpractice lawsuit against him because a
new doctor has determined that a procedure, etc. that the prior physician
performed has harmed you in some way.

- At this point, it is critical that he has a record of the treatments that he
performed previously.

I might be wrong on the reasons, but I know at my Dad's office they don't give
the original chart back, just a copy.



--- Jim Whitehead <> wrote:
> Here's a question for State of California FoRKs:
> In the State of California, do I own my medical records?
> In particular, if I am in my doctor's office, can I demand my medical
> records folder, and walk out the door with it?
> What motivates this question is that, the lat time I visted my dentist in
> Irvine, prior to moving to Santa Cruz (but knowing that I would soon be
> moving), I asked for my dental records folder. They said, "no, we'll hold
> onto it, but you can request a copy to be sent to you when you get to Santa
> Cruz." So, I called them today to get my records sent. Now I need to fill
> out a form authorizing them to send my records (fine, this is good for
> privacy), and pay them $25. Grrr. Why couldn't I just walk out the door with
> *my* medical records at the end of my final visit?
> - Jim

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