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Studies possession

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Midpack

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May 31, 2012
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166
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Argentina
Hi!

I wonder how are studies results managed in your countries. It seems to me, after reading many posts here that, at least in USA, results of say an echo are usually not given to you (the patient) but instead sent to your cardiologist. Is this right?
In my country, this is managed in a completely different way. The center where they are performed gives them directly to you. When you see your cardiologist, you bring your studies with you, he takes notes of what he considers important, and then gives them back to you. So you are allways in possession of your complete own studies. Isnt this better? Not only you have them with you to compare or address any doubt, but it also allows you to see a different doctor for a second opinion (and your current doctor will not even know about it! :biggrin2:).
What do you think?
 

tom in MO

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Jan 17, 2012
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In the US you can get a copy of your echos if you wish. It saves time for the cariologist to get your echo before your show up for the appointment. In addition, many valve jobs are done on elderly people who have trouble just getting to the office, much less remembering to bring their records :). In my hospital system, the echo is accessible through an electronics records system by everyone including my family doctor, my surgeon, my cardiologist and my nurse in cardiac rehab.
 

Paleowoman

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In the UK patients are not usually given copies of echos or other studies. This is true whether under the NHS or private health care (formerly under private care you'd get studies but it's not guaranteed nowadays). I have found that the only way to get copies is to specifically ask for them.

My parents lived in France and they have a system there that sounds like that in Argentina. When a patient has a test for echo or whatever, the patient is given the results and takes them with them to see the doctor. The patient keeps everything.

Patients in France are used to being responsible for their own studies so they do bring them with them, no problem. In the UK patients are not used to having their own studies and so they're treated as though they would be irresponsible. I used to work in a hospital and sometimes even hospitals lose studies !

I try and get copies of everything.
 

Superbob

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I've found here you can get printed copies if you ask for them. You can even go back and get them on video, which I did and sent to my surgeon when I thought a former cardio and tech had misinterpreted my echo (they had) a few years ago. I now have a great cardio and competent tech -- and thanks for the reminder; I have a follow-up with my cardio tomorrow on my recent echo and I will ask for a copy for my files.
 

AZ Don

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Apr 23, 2013
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Phoenix, AZ
In my country, this is managed in a completely different way. The center where they are performed gives them directly to you. When you see your cardiologist, you bring your studies with you, he takes notes of what he considers important, and then gives them back to you. So you are allways in possession of your complete own studies. Isnt this better?
Yes! In the US the Dr. generally provides the results of the study verbally. I always ask for copies of my studies now. On a test unrelated to my heart it was mentioned that I had a dilated aorta, but it was not mentioned in the summary/follow-up section of the report. The Dr. that ordered the test completely missed it and when I asked the lab for a copy they sent it to my primary care Dr. and she missed it as well. Good thing I asked for a copy and actually read it.
 

epstns

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Part of the process depends upon the preferences and systems in use by the doctors we choose. Most of my doctors are members of the same medical group, at the same medical center. With their electronic record system, that means that my cardio, my internist and my urologist can all see the results of all tests performed by or for any of them. When the echo tech files the report, my cardio has a chance to review it prior to my consultation, and we can then have a productive discussion. If they were not "connected" I would likely have to wait for the cardio to read the report before discussing it, and he may not have the time he needs to "digest" the content of the echo prior to that discussion. By comparison, my electro physiologist (pacemaker clinic and doc) is part of another medical system, and his reports never seem to get to the cardio. I try to get copies, but sometimes even I lost track of them. I wish I could use the EP at my cardio's medical group, but when I did see him he was so incompetent that I was in the ER the following morning to un-do what his tech had changed the day before.

The other thing that is different here in the US is that the technician performing many of the tests does not "interpret" the test for the patient. That task is left to the patient's doctor, so the report needs to go to the doc before the patient sees it. When I get copies of my echo's, I get them from my cardio, not from the echo tech.
 

Elgato

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Mar 7, 2014
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Tucson, AZ USA
I called the hospital that performed my TEE and Angiogram to request copies.
They were ready the next day with paper reports/summaries and discs of the actual procedures.
The discs included an application that allow them to be viewed on my home computer. No charge.

I requested the same information on my TCE and Vascular from my cardiologists office. There was a $10
charge and the paper reports arrived a week later. No discs! What a difference between two organizations.
The front office has been a disaster since day one.

What tests do you feel are most important to a second opinion doc?

Thanks
 

Gail in Ca

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SF Bay Area, CA
If getting a second opinion, I would bring all the tests that are relevant so he/she could look at them. The discs are important, too.
My clinic has everything online, and we can download our records. Also, if I go to Stanford, they have access to my records, too.
It's a Sutter health thing, I think.
Years ago, before all my heart stuff started, I had an echocardiogram, but the doctor that read the results said I was fine. My pcp, however, didn't agree and sent me to a cardiologist she knew, along with the video of my echo. That cardiologist saw the aneurysm, valve leakage, that the other totally missed! And I had a 6cm aneurysm! So, the discs are good to show the doc.
 

river-wear

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Oct 26, 2009
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Los Gatos, CA
My current cardiologist has me come in for my annual checks and schedules his office to do the echo right before I see him. That way the test is done and I get to know the results right afterward. I can get a copy of the printed reports when I ask, but they do charge a small fee if I want a copy of the CD with the video. It's been pretty convenient for me.
 

pellicle

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Nov 4, 2012
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7,268
Location
Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
Hi

sorry about the delay in adding my thoughts, been meaning to but kept slipping my mind / agenda
So you are allways in possession of your complete own studies. Isnt this better?
perhaps, but not for everyone. My Dad lost his records a few times when he moved house, when he got the shits with carrying them and he tossed out "all that old crap".

Where we live (tropical area) x-rays easily get covered in mold and then that acts as a bank to further distribute mold spoors over the things where didn't have it. I'm an amateur photographer and I struggle with mold, keeping my gear and my negs in humidity reducing cabinets.

Imagine for people who don't own a home and live in poorer circumstances?

Having said that there is a *real* need for something better. I have had a clinic I went to for years (luckilly NOT the hospital who did my surgeries) have all their patients records destroyed because the (Wangers) opted for the cheapest off site storage (who unethically used the cheapest local area which was in a {gosh} flood zoned area). So in the 2011 Brisbane floods they lost it all, everyones that was a patient of theirs (idiots).

Something cloud based would be a good idea if it wasn't for the fact that (as a professional IT person of > 20 years experience) that's just as dangerous because (again) shortcuts result in poor data protection and so stuff can be illegally accessed or simply go 'poof' back into random bits.

Then there is getting consensus over who would do that and what the protocols are. I have worked for a number of librarys (big ones, like national libraries) and there there are arguments globally on which data storage standards (even in XML there are many variants) should be used ... this results in difficulty in getting data from one area into another.

Not to mention the costs.
 

river-wear

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Los Gatos, CA
Ha, pellicle, that reminds me of going to see my old dentist when visiting family last year. An old filling fell out, so my mom called him on a Saturday to see if he could help me out. We went to his office and found out he had gone home to retrieve my records (I hadn't seen him in over ten years). How's that for long term storage?!
 

pellicle

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Nov 4, 2012
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Queensland, OzTrayLeeYa
Ha ...... We went to his office and found out he had gone home to retrieve my records (I hadn't seen him in over ten years). How's that for long term storage?!
beautiful :)

I have a friend who's a photographer and schools form a big part of his client base. He has about half of his downstairs closed off and airconditined for keeping his negs in good order for decades (never know when you'll get a request from Aunty Nellie for a reprint of little billy in grade 5)
 

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