Public access to medical records – why is progress so slow?

Nov 9, 2021 | Scleroderma, Webinar

Medical notes have traditionally been ‘owned’ by their authors – clinicians – with access granted to patients as an afterthought. But there is growing momentum behind the idea that medical notes should, by default, be made available, in real time, to patients and their carers. After all, we can access our banking records, Internet histories and other data about us in real time. Why not our medical records? Despite advances in technology, digital literacy, and favourable changes in legislation, progress towards making medical records easily available has been, with a few notable exceptions, glacially slow.

The BMJ has long believed that all patients should have easy, real-time access to their medical records and notes. In this series of webinars, hosted by the BMJ Patient Editor team, a powerful line-up of international experts will explore the underlying reasons for this slow progress from a variety of angles. In doing so, we aim to stimulate debate, discussion – and hopefully, action.

Webinar 1: What are ethical issues?
Wednesday 10th November 5pm (GMT)

Webinar 2: What are the professional and cultural barriers?
Wednesday 17th November 5pm (GMT)

Webinar 3: How to avoid widening health inequalities?
Wednesday 24th November 5pm (GMT)

Webinar 4: What are the bureaucratic barriers and governance issues?
Wednesday 1st December 5pm (GMT)

More information on the webinar series here.

Read the opinion article Access to personal health records—why is progress so slow? here.

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