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Greater patient access to records proposed

USA Today, June 9, 2011

A proposed federal rule would require hospitals, doctors' offices and health insurers to tell patients of anyone who has accessed their electronic medical records, if requested.Under the rule proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), health-care-related businesses must list everyone in their firms — from doctors to data-entry clerks — who has accessed a patient's electronic records and when."It is important to protect a person's right to know how their health information has been used or disclosed," said Rachel Seeger, spokeswoman for HHS' Office of Civil Rights. For example, in 2008, the UCLA Medical Center fired several employees who looked at Britney Spears' medical records without being directly involved in her care. Under the new rule, Spears could see who accessed her records.