Lawmakers Amend Bill To Soften Requirements on Noting EHR Changes
In response to concerns from health care providers, lawmakers have amended a bill (SB 850) that would require clinicians to record any changes made to patients' electronic health records, California Watch reports.
The amended bill, by Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco), passed the Assembly Committee on Health last week. The bill goes before the Assembly Judiciary Committee today (Taggart, California Watch, 6/28).
As originally written, the legislation would have required health care providers to record any edits to data in patients' EHRs and identify who made the changes. It also would have enabled patients who request access to their EHRs to view the modifications.
Paloma Perez -- associate legislative counsel for the Consumer Attorneys of California, which sponsored SB 850 -- said the bill aims to prevent situations in which patients' medical data is missing because of data entry errors (California Healthline, 6/13).
Several health care organizations -- including the California Association of Physician Groups, the California Hospital Association, the California Medical Association and Kaiser Permanente -- expressed opposition to the bill Â
Pamela Lane, vice president of health informatics for CHA, said the groups were concerned that the bill would require California to follow different standards at a time when federal officials are hammering out national health IT guidelines.
Details of the Amended Bill
The amended version of SB 850 removed the provision requiring all changes to be noted within a patient's EHR. Although health care providers still would need to record all changes made, patients would not see all of the edits when they request their EHRs.
Christopher Dolan -- an attorney and former president of the Consumer Attorneys of California -- said that under the amended version, patients might have difficulty seeing changes to their EHRs, but lawyers will be able to access that data.
CHA said it now is neutral on the amended bill (California Watch, 6/28).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.