CMIO Views on the “Open Notes” Rule of the 21st Century Cures Act

Despite some initial reluctance, physicians have largely gotten used to a federal rule requiring them to share notes electronically with patients, several chief medical information officers told Becker’s.

But that doesn’t mean there haven’t been challenges. For instance, a children’s hospital leader noted that pediatric patients have unique privacy concerns.

The “open notes” rule, part of the 21st Century Cures Act, went into effect in April 2021. It mandated that physicians electronically share notes with patients about their consultations, procedure, and lab and imaging reports. The only exceptions are for psychotherapy visits or notes that could be used in a legal or administrative proceeding or harm the patient or their privacy.

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