Rhode Island Targets Doctors With Bad Penmanship
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – Some Rhode Island lawmakers are looking to outlaw illegible writing by physicians.
Doctors and other medical professionals who continue to handwrite notes and records would face a fine under legislation sponsored by five state senators. Instead, physicians would have to type all their notes, records and files.
The lawmakers argue that the scrawl of some doctors makes it impossible for patients to read their own medical records.
The Rhode Island Medical Society opposes the idea. Lobbyist Steven DeToy said the state’s medical community is making strides toward electronic medical records. But a ban on handwritten notes would pose an obstacle to doctors, especially those in smaller practices.
The bill is languishing in the legislative equivalent of a doctor’s waiting room: a hearing scheduled on the bill has been postponed indefinitely.
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