Despite growing concerns about privacy and security, less than 1 in 10 patients withhold information from their providers. That is the finding of a recent national survey conducted by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.
While more than 70 percent of respondents worry about security of their data, that doesnt stop them from openly sharing information with providers. Consequently, ONC argues that the survey suggests that increased adoption of EHRs is not associated with individuals privacy and security concerns.
In fact, at least three-quarters of individuals wanted their provider to use an EHR, and 7 in 10 wanted to share their medical records electronically with other providers treating them, despite any privacy or security concerns. Furthermore, individuals whose providers use an EHR have similar levels of concerns about the privacy and security of their medical records as compared to individuals whose providers use paper records, according to an ONC data brief. Continuing to assess this pattern will be important as evidence is still emerging.
However, the agency does acknowledge another study which found an association between EHRs and rates of withholding. In that 2014 study, 13 percent of respondents reported having withheld information from a provider because of privacy/security concerns. According to the authors, the findings suggest that patients may non-disclose to providers to protect against the perceived EHR privacy and security risks.
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