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2014.07.27 Sunday

#127 The right of patients to have access to their medical records



    The right of patients to have access to their medical records

    Since a long time ago, being a doctor is the only job in which one can treat people justly with medical treatment and by using medicine. At that time, most people didn't know whether doctors' treatments were right or wrong, and there was no room for complaints about the treatments.

    However, we have much more information about medical care today. Elderly people are deeply interested in their health and there are lots of TV programs and books to attract them. The topics of these communication and print media include how to keep healthy, which hospital is good and up-to-date medical treatment.

    It could be acceptable to allow us access to our medical records in the present day, because we have learned the fact that medical treatments are not perfect ways to cure diseases and doctors are, after all, human beings that are capable of making errors. We should know our medical records and think of how to cope with the diseases by ourselves.

    End-of-life care, a health care that focuses on how a patient can enjoy the rest of their life when they have an incurable illness, is getting more popular recently. By knowing their own medical records, people can select the type of that they need to care and enjoy their rest of lives without pain. Probably that's better than being ill in bed for a long time and waiting for a death with pain.

    However, I have some doubts about the trend. It seems people choose the easy evasion from this world that is hard to live in. To change the world into a place that is more enjoyable and worth living longer in would be important as well as thinking about the end of one's life.

    I would like to offer you my version of a possible section (body or conclusion) based on this topic:

    Medicine has progressed in leaps and bounds throughout the ages, however doubt and distrust towards the reliability or even moral integrity of practitioners of medicine remain within society.

    It can be argued that allowing patients access to their own medical records is, in a way, a democratic approach to the doctor-patient relationship.

    It is, without a doubt, a much more transparent approach and is one that must be considered if the distrust towards modern medicine is to be eliminated in the future.

    Free access to medical records for the public is however a double-edged sword and comes with some obvious risks such as the misuse of private medical information by criminal groups.
    Access to medical records must still clearly be analysed and any future initiatives related to public release of records should be regulated and controlled by a rigorous framework.

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