Caution: Patients’ Printed Records May Not Match the Electronic Health Record
Audit trails can be an important defense in medical malpractices cases. The printed version of a file often does not match the electronic record.
- The paper record may be incomplete and less clear.
- Audit trails also can help with HIPAA compliance.
- Hospitals should have specific policies and procedures for e-discovery.
Most plaintiffs’ attorneys now request audit trails immediately with the first contact for e-discovery, and risk managers often groan when they think of the work involved. However, there is a reason to seek the audit trail for your own benefit: It might show more exculpatory evidence than a paper printout of the same file.
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