This will totally reverse the current legal protection for patient privacy – all in the name of enhanced Medicare claim justification.
The AMA claims that "The patient record will be completely exposed, extracts obtained, copied, retained and potentially submitted in court for all to see" and goes on to comment that "Doctors fear the legislation will prevent patients from discussing intimate health concerns once the patient understands that privacy is no longer guaranteed."
Dr Rosanna Capolingua, President of the AMA says, "It is remarkable that a Government should take such a step as to violate your personal medical record. This is 'Big Brother' at its worst. Doctors take their oath of patient confidentiality extremely seriously, but this legislation forces us to break this oath or face a hefty fine"
As I see it, this would never have been an issue in "pre computer" days. Patient records were all on paper (I defy anyone to decipher the handwriting!) and any effort to copy them to a Government authority would have resulted in a 'doubling' of demand on the forestry industry.
Now that all records are computerised, the Government sees an easy target; after-all, it's all just a bunch of bits and bytes on disk, how hard is it to get a copy?
Never mind that the overall security of this information HAS to be reduced. Currently, patient files are in small groups on the (hopefully) protected PCs in surgeries all over the country. How attractive would a single repository be to the 'bad boys of the internet?'
This is an outrage. It must be stopped.