OpenNotes

CAC has entered into a collaboration with OpenNotes, a growing movement that promotes the sharing of healthcare practitioners’ clinical notes with their patients.  OpenNotes does not sell any products but rather is a foundation-supported initiative headquartered in Boston. The objective of this collaboration is to acquaint CAC’s audiences with the benefits of OpenNotes and thereby inspire consumers to ask their doctors, nurses and other health care professionals to adopt open notes and inspire healthcare institutions and practitioners to support the practice.  In furtherance of this objective we are introducing a new regular section in CAC News & Views on OpenNotes.

OpenNotes refers to the notes healthcare professionals include in medical records to describe their interactions with patients.  In 2010 hospital systems in Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Washington State joined in an exploratory study allowing 20,000 patients to read their clinicians’ notes.  The results of the study were positive; physicians reported little change in workload and patients overwhelmingly embraced the practice.  Since then, multiple hospital systems all over the country have joined the OpenNotes movement and experienced improved practitioner/ patient relations, greater patient empowerment and compliance with treatment regimens, a reduction in errors in medical records, and other benefits. Fears that note writing would become more burdensome for practitioners or that patients would be frightened by the content of the notes have not materialized.

CAC endorses OpenNotes’ mission of “spreading and exploring the effects of open notes” and believes we can help advance this mission by acquainting the consumers, regulators, certifiers, and others in our orbit with the benefits of open notes and encouraging them to embrace and promote the OpenNotes movement.

For more information, visit: www.opennotes.org and www.opennotes.org/tools-resources/for-health-care-providers/implementation-toolkit/#5