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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Take Control of Your Medical Records

"The Healthcare.gov website continues to have security issues due to weaknesses in security controls."  That is a headline in my news feed today. Read the full story here.

I hate to hear this news for various reasons.  First, I hate it because it means that those of us who have no other option than to enroll in the national health care system could lose our privacy as our personal information is not adequately secured.  How ironic that private contractors who keep your medical records and follow federal regulations are more secure than the federal government itself.

Secondly, I've had people ask me, "If the Government can't keep our private data safe, how can SafelyFiled?"  That's a very good question.  I could go into a lot of detail on that topic but that's not the focus of this blog.  Let me briefly address this question by saying that as a private company, we have the authority and ability to make the decisions needed to ensure security is built into the system.  But a contractor working on General Services Administration's contract is required to closely follow the contract.   And often the lawyers who are charged with drafting the contract don’t have the technical background to provide the right instructions or the flexibility to quickly make changes to take into account technological advancements.  Enough said about that :-)

Here’s how we handle this issue at SafelyFiled.  We built the security infrastructure in FIRST, and then we built the easy to use application on top of that. You can read more about our security on our website.

Take Control of Your Own Health Care Records

Given the security issues, it is more important than ever that we take control of our own records. It's also a very good idea to have our own copy of them.  Here are just a few reasons why:

  1. If you are ever in an emergency away from your normal health care provider, the medical staff attending to you may not be able to get to your records.
  2. If you change doctors, or see different doctors for various health care needs, all of the doctors may not have access to the other doctors’ records.
  3. You may need access to your full medical history to apply for disability or some other assistance program.
  4. No one can ensure your medical records are complete more so than you. Having access to all of them will ensure your full medical history is available and accurate.
  5. If you travel outside of your home country, your medical records kept in country may not be accessible quickly enough in an emergency.

Don't know how to request your medical records?   Read this article.

Where should you keep records when you get them? 

You should definitely keep them in a secure place, but your records still need to be accessible.  Ideally, it would be best to have access to them from anywhere you are.

So how does one do that?  SafelyFiled/SafelyMD is the answer.  

SafelyMD is a tool you can use to store up to 5 documents, such as copies of your last wishes and health care power of attorney in the event of emergencies. SafelyMD also provides a medical form you can fill out to list information such as allergies, prescription medications and dosage, your emergency contacts, current medical conditions, medical history and even any implants you might have – all important in an emergency.  That information can be accessed at any time via an emergency medical data card that you can carry in your wallet.  The form itself can also be downloaded and printed so if you have a scheduled medical appointment, you can take it with you and hand it to the doctor to answer the questions always asked regarding your current health and medications.

SafelyFiled allows for even more storage; up to 1000 records, videos and images.  SafelyMD  is included in SafelyFiled and allows for the management of medical information for all family members within one account.

Take Control Starting Today        
If you don't currently have all of your medical records within your possession, check out the article in the link above and make a plan to get them.  Once you have them, store a copy of them in SafelyFiled so you'll always have them available wherever you are.

When you visit the doctor from now on, be sure to ask for a copy of your medical info from that visit for your files.

Not ready for SafelyFiled yet?  Start with SafelyMD.  You can always upgrade from there to SafelyFiled when you're ready to get more of your records stored away.  At the very least, fill out the SafelyMD medical form and print out your emergency data card.  That will get you started on the path to taking control of your medical records and health care with much better security than the national health care system provides!  

Get started today by clicking here.

Tweet: Take control of your #medicalrecords. It's more important than ever! http://ctt.ec/d598k+ #HIPAA #HealthCare
It's more important than ever to take control of your own medical records.





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