[ Wednesday, May 21, 2014 ]
Jeff [5:33 PM]
Under HIPAA, individuals have a right to access almost all of their PHI. One big exception is psychotherapy notes, which are pretty narrowly defined to exclude diagnosis information, treatment start and stop times, medications, and any other information kept in the regular medical record. These notes are treated differently because they are often intended for the benefit of the therapist, rather than the patient, and may contain information that, if exposed to the patient, might hinder the therapy. Thus, the exception allows the therapist to keep her own notes and not have to worry about censoring them, in case the patient asked for a copy.
Boston's Beth Israel Deaconess hospital is now allowing patients to review their therapist's notes
, and it's causing a bit of an uproar in the psychotherapist community. It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
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