- To get a second opinion from another doctor. If you're not sure about a diagnosis or treatment plan, you can request your medical records to take to another doctor for their opinion. This is especially important if you're considering a major surgery or other treatment with significant risks. A second opinion can help you feel more confident about your decision and make sure you're getting the best possible care.
- To apply for life insurance or disability benefits. Many insurance companies require you to submit your medical records as part of their application process. This is because they want to make sure that you're in good health and that you're not likely to make a claim on their policy in the future. If you're applying for life insurance, the insurance company will also use your medical records to calculate your premium.
- To file a lawsuit. If you've been injured due to medical malpractice, you may need your medical records to file a lawsuit. The records will help your lawyer prove that you were injured and that the injury was caused by the negligence of your healthcare provider.
- To document your medical history. Keeping a copy of your medical records can be helpful for tracking your health over time, or for sharing with future healthcare providers. This is especially important if you have a chronic condition or if you've had multiple surgeries. Having your medical records on hand can make it easier for your doctor to diagnose and treat you in the future.
- To help with research. Medical researchers may request your medical records to help them study diseases or treatments. This research can help to improve the understanding of diseases and to develop new treatments. If you're interested in participating in medical research, you can contact your doctor or a local research institute to see if they are conducting any studies that are relevant to your condition.
- To comply with a legal requirement. Some government agencies may require you to submit your medical records as part of a legal process, such as a child custody case. For example, the court may need to see your medical records to determine whether you are fit to parent.
In addition to these common reasons, there are many other reasons why you might need to make a chart request to get your medical records. For example, you may need your records to:
- Apply for a job that requires a medical clearance.
- Obtain benefits from a government program, such as Social Security Disability Insurance.
- Claim a workers' compensation injury.
- File a complaint with a healthcare regulatory agency.
- Understand your risk for certain diseases.
- Track your progress over time.
- Share your records with a family member or caregiver.
If you think you may need to make a chart request, get in touch with us to find out more about the process. In most cases, if you opt to do this yourself you will need to fill out a form and pay a fee for copies of your records. The process of getting your medical records can vary depending on the healthcare provider and can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months (or longer!) to receive your records after you make a request.
Getting your medical records is an important part of managing your health. By understanding the reasons why you might need to make a chart request, you can be prepared to take the necessary steps to get the information you need.