What to Request

You’ll need to determine (1) what kind of health information you want (for example, your entire medical record or just your immunization list)  (2) what format you want it in (a printable list to share with a family member or machine-readable data to plug into a health app); and (3) how you want to receive it (email, traditional mail, etc.). More information is below to help you think through each category and inform your records request.

Categories of Health Data

  • Most recent medication list
  • Allergy list
  • Immunization/vaccination history
  • Clinical summary of your most recent office/hospital visit
  • Clinical summary of another specified office/hospital visit
  • Visit notes that your clinician takes during or after your appointment
  • Entire medical record held by a specific provider
  • Data from multiple office/hospital visits for continuity of care records

Unfortunately, some data, such as X-Rays or lengthy medical histories, can be challenging to access digitally. For that reason, we encourage patients with a particularly complex clinical history to work with their care providers to better understand what is available.

Data Formats

  • Structured data I can use in an app (i.e., CDA, CCR, other formats a computer can read and act on)
  • View-only PDFs
  • Readable text file
  • Paper copy

Delivery Methods

  • Secure email (e.g. Direct Address)
  • Non-secure email (e.g. via Gmail)*
  • CD-ROM
  • USB/Thumb Drive
  • Other electronic delivery methods
  • Fax
  • Standard postal service
*You may choose to receive copies of your medical records by non-secure e-mail. There is always a risk that the e-mail may be intercepted and the contents – including your medical records – accessed by an unauthorized person.  You may choose to accept this risk because you want the convenience of having records sent by e-mail, and your doctor or other provider should accommodate your request by law. If necessary, show your provider this federal guidance.