Sorry, we comprompomised your health info. My bad.

So for the last two weeks I’ve been fighting with the admins at 2 different doctor’s offices to get copies of my medical records there. It’s tedious – the system is designed to frustrate the average patient: “you have to fax in a request.” I point out that the only places that still use fax machines are doctors offices. “Why can’t I email you the request?” I ask. “Because that’s not secure – we wouldn’t be able to make sure the information stays private.” And on and on the game goes.

Today I get a letter in the mail from the neurology department at UCSF. It seems that someone lost a thumb drive with my personal medical information on it. Curious, since when I last saw them – almost a year ago, I was informed that the test results were negative and that there was nothing wrong with me. What is someone doing with my health info almost a year later when there was nothing wrong with me?

So tell me – why is it OK for medical offices to put patients health info on thumb drives to be lost, but it’s NOT ok for me to request for my medical records via an email?

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