PATIENT / PROVIDER ADVOCACY
ACCESS TO PATIENT HEALTH CARE RECORDS
If you are the patient or a person authorized by the patient, then you have a right to access
the patient’s medical records.
Who is a person authorized by the patient?
- It means any person authorized in writing by the patient.
For a minor patient, it means: The parent, guardian, or legal
- For a deceased patient, it means: The personal representative,
spouse, or domestic partnership under ch. 770, or adult member of
the deceased patient’s immediate family if no spouse or domestic
partner survives a deceased patient.
- For an incapacitated patient, it means: a health care agent
designated by the patient’s power of attorney for health care.
- For a patient adjudicated incompetent, it means: the guardian, or a
court appointed temporary guardian.
If you are the patient or person authorized by the patient, you can access the medical
records by requesting a copy of the medical record, or by inspecting the medical records upon
submitting a statement of informed consent and reasonable notice.
Issues regarding access to medical records can involve hospitals, clinics, pharmacies,
nursing homes, or other health care providers preventing the patient or person authorized by the
patient from viewing and obtaining copies of medical records to overcharging individuals for
medical records. Health care providers cannot charge patients or persons authorized by the
patient for electronic copies of the patient’s medical record. For paper copies, a health care
provider may charge no more than: $1 per page for the first 25 pages; 75 cents per page for pages
26 to 50; 50 cents per page for pages 51 to 100; and 30 cents per page for pages 101 and above.
However, these charges are adjusted year to year by the consumer price index and the current
charges can be viewed here. 1 Additionally, if a patient is eligible for medical assistance, a health
care provider cannot charge more than 25% of the charges for the first copy.
If you have been prevented from accessing your medical records, call your friends at
Zimmer & Rens LLC. (414) 296-6225