An important study just got my attention. Patients and clinicians in different cities were asked questions about concerns and preferences. Titled “Insights for Internists: ‘I Want the Computer to Know Who I Am’,” the study reports: (emphasis added)
- Patients do keep their own medical records
- They want access to everything in their record
- Privacy worries “appeared to fade rapidly in the face of the desire to have records fully available in emergency settings and with multiple and new providers”
- “health professionals professed far more concern about maintaining privacy than patients.”
- They understand that their clinicians are busy/stressed, they want the information to supplement and make their (clinicians) work more efficient, not less
Boy do I wish we’d all known about this during the debates about meaningful use and medical records this summer! There was so much talk about “Well what do people want?” and “Won’t patients be overwhelmed? They won’t be able to understand it.”
And here’s the thing: it was published back in May, and the research was done THREE YEARS AGO, Nov. 2006 to Jan. 2007.
How’s that for a great example of the “lethal lag time” we talk about in the e-patient white paper? That’s the delay between when new knowledge comes into existence and when it’s made its way through the publication system, for use by decision-makers. Three years, in this case.
Thanks to the always magnificent, e-patient-minded Ted Eytan, MD for highlighting this study on his blog Friday.