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OpenNotes: Opening Patient’s Access | News

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OpenNotes: Opening Patient’s Access
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MONTOUR COUNTY – Medical records and every detail from every doctor’s office visit is not at patient’s fingertips. Hundreds of doctors in the Geisinger Health System have started using a program called OpenNotes. It allows patients to go online and view every note their doctor writes down.

The program just began thanks to Dr. Jonathan Darer’s research over the past year.

“Because we showed that really patients really like this and that it`s safe, doctors don`t seem to mind it that much,” said Chief Innovation Officer Dr. Darer.

Dr. Anthony Billas has been testing the program with his patients and admits at first, he was a bit nervous.

“I was worried I’d get a lot of phone calls. I was worried patients wouldn’t understand some of the medical jargon or some of the abbreviations and none of those worries came true,” said Dr. Anthony Billas.

Research shows that 82% of all patients using this program opened notes after every doctor’s visit.

“We don`t totally understand what they`re getting out of it, they seem to really feel like it`s a great benefit,” said Dr. Darer.

Currently more than 500 of Geisinger`s 1000 doctor’s use this OpenNotes program including many here at the Knapper Clinic. Doctors say they only expect the number of people using it to grow.

“We may not need to do a whole lot with OpenNotes to spread it other than to just let people know and that the market place will take care of it itself,” said Dr. Darer.

“I think it`s probably going to catch on, I think transparency is getting to be a bigger thing in medicine. Patients want to be more involved with their care, so I think it`s probably going to spread across the country,” said Dr. Billas.

The OpenNotes program is currently available to Geisinger’s outpatients.

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