Physicians Accessing Patient Specific Information from Electronic Databases
The Council of the College has approved in principle an amended policy addressing physician access to patient specific information from electronic databases.
Given the broad scope of this policy, the Council directed that the proposed amended policy be widely circulated to physicians, health care organizations and the public to seek feedback.
The current version of this policy addresses physician access to patient specific information from the Pharmaceutical Information Program (PIP). Upon review, the Council recognized that the principles and expectations are equally applicable to all databases from which physicians access patient specific information. This includes the PIP, the electronic Health Record (eHR) Viewer, the picture archiving and communication system (PACS), as well as electronic medical records (EMR) contained within private clinics and public facilities.
The policy was amended to reflect this broader application, and is intended to emphasize the privacy expectations relevant to electronic databases. It sets out a number of general principles applicable to accessing patient specific information, and also establishes specific requirements that must be met when a physician authorizes an employee to access information within an electronic database. This includes a reporting expectation in the event a physician reasonably suspects a breach of the policy.
The Council anticipates that it will consider feedback from stakeholders, including members of the profession, at its meeting on September 25, 2020. The Council would like to hear from you! If you have concerns with the proposed changes, it would be helpful if you explain the reasons for those concerns, as well as any other suggested approach.
How to Respond
In order for the College to consider feedback and correlate feedback for the Council in time for the next Council meeting, all feedback should be provided to the College no later than September 1, 2020.
Please complete the linked
survey. Alternatively, feedback can be
provided to firstname.lastname@example.org.