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NCJ Number: 90724 Find in a Library
Title: Criminal Code Regarding Medical Records Access
Journal: Revue de science criminelle et de droit penal compare  Issue:4  Dated:(October - December 1982)  Pages:753-764
Author(s): L Rapp
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 12
Format: Article
Language: French
Country: France
Annotation: This article contends that French information security laws pertaining to medical records access unjustly protect hospital administrations to the detriment of patients' individual rights and well being.
Abstract: The discussion cites a December 1970 law which mandates full disclosure by the hospital of a patient's medical files if the latter requests to see the documentation of his medical situation. It then contends that in practice, however, there is no legal avenue whereby patients can access their medical records in the face of a hospital administration's refusal to comply. Two legal appeals in Toulouse, France contested the hospitals' right to deny patients' families information on their case histories. Court rulings favored the hospitals' position and illustrate the shortcomings of the law and its formulation. Essentially, the legislation is flawed in not specifying the criminal penalties to which a hospital may be liable if it refuses to disclose records. The two appeals cases left the impression that judges are without the authority to interpret the intent of the law and that patients and their families have been left without legal recourse if their right to access their own medical histories is being violated. A total of 47 footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Confidential records access; France; Hospitals; Legal liability; Medicolegal considerations
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