CHAPTER 59

FORMERLY

HOUSE BILL NO. 93

AS AMENDED BY HOUSE AMENDMENT NO. 1 AS AMENDED BY HA 1 to HA 1

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 24 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO TRANSFER OF MEDICAL RECORDS.

WHEREAS, it is a common practice among physicians to transfer patient records from one physician to another when a patient transfers physicians; and

WHEREAS, it is a common practice among physicians to reproduce and transfer these medical records at no cost.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:

Section 1. Amend §1761, Title 24 of the Delaware Code, by inserting the phrase "change of physician and transfer of patient records," before the word "notification" as it appears in the title to §1761.

Section 2. Amend §1761, Title 24 of the Delaware Code, by designating the current subsection "(c)" as subsection "(d)", by designating the current subsection "(d)" as subsection "(e)" and by adding a new subsection as follows:

" (c) Whenever a patient changes from the care of one physician to another physician, the prior physician shall transfer the records of the patient to the new physician upon the request of either the new physician or the patient. The prior physician shall be reimbursed reasonable expenses of copying the patient's records, not to exceed $25. Alternatively, if the patient and new physician agree, the prior physician may forward to the new physician a summary of the patient's record in lieu of the entire record at no charge to the patient. If a patient changes care from one physician to another physician, and fails to notify the prior physician, or leaves the care of the prior physician for a period of seven (7) years from the last entry date on the patient's record and fails to notify the prior physician, or fails to request the transfer of records to the new physician, then the prior physician shall maintain said records for a period of seven years from the last entry date in the patient's medical record after which time the records may be permanently disposed of in a manner that insures confidentiality of the records."

Approved June 18, 2001