NPR's recent story, When Patients Read What Their Doctors Write, focuses on the benefits to both doctors and patients.
Katherine Streeter, MD, shares her past experience as a medical resident working ER duty when her patient surprised her by asking to see what she was writing.
With no apparent reason to refuse, Streeter "sat down next to her and showed her what I was typing. She began pointing out changes."
The patient corrected inaccuracies in the history of her symptoms, and confessed "that she was under a lot of stress and had returned to heavy drinking a couple of months ago."
That discussion over the chart led to a timely accurate diagnosis. Streeter concludes, it's changed my practice, and fundamentally transformed my understanding of whom the medical record ultimately belongs to: the patient."
The idea of sharing the chart with patients is not new, as I'll discuss in my next post.