Study Finds Patients Are Interested In Seeing Their Doctor’s Notes

BOSTON (CBS) – Patients are praising a new one-year program that allows them to see their doctor’s notes, according to a Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center study.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Diane Stern spoke to Dr. Tom Delbanco, a senior author of the study:

“Transparency is here to stay. It’s moving all across the nation and all kinds of things. I personally think it’s a terrific thing, that the good that comes out of this, will well outweigh the few bad incidents or the bad things that could happen,” said Delbanco.

While more than 90 percent of the patients were excited, some doctors aren’t sold on the new program.

“Ninety percent of (doctors) thought they’d be scaring their patients or confusing them. Eighty percent of them thought it would be more work for them, that it would be the straw that could break the camel’s back for an already busy doctor,” said Delbanco.

Of the doctors who did decide to participate, some appeared curious about the new program’s effects.

“They were much more bullish about it than the doctors who told us to go away. It’s really a split vote, and I think the doctors are frankly curious about seeing what will happen. I think they also sense that this is gonna happen whether they like it or not,” said Delbanco.

Delbanco admitted he did have to adjust the way he writes doctor’s notes under the program, but it didn’t take much of a difference on his workload.

“We use S.O.B. to, in our language, mean ‘shortness of breath,’ to you it may mean something different. And I found myself changing the way I wrote things like that, and I use smaller words rather than bigger words, but I didn’t find myself changing an awful lot,” said Dr. Delbanco.

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