Do you know how much you are going to be charged when you request your medical records in Colorado? Ten bucks? A hundred? FREE (“because they are MY records”)?
HA! Read on, read on:
The way it USED to be is if you requested medical records from a doctor or hospital in Colorado, the maximum you can be charged is set by 6 C.C.R 1011-1, Chapter 2, Part 126.96.36.199. In 2008, the maximum price for medical records is “not to exceed $16.50 for the first ten or fewer pages, $.75 per page for pages 11-40, and $.50 per page for every additional page.”
Even THAT was expensive and could quickly add up!
But, there is a way to get your medical records for free.
The same regulation states, “No fees shall be charged by a health care provider of patient records for requests for medical records received from another health care provider or to an individual regulated pursuant to Section 25-1-802(1) solely for the purpose of providing continuing medical care to a patient.”
This means another of your doctors can request and obtain medical records at no cost, if it solely for the purpose of providing continuing medical care.
This allows your new doctor to obtain you records from your prior doctor. This also allow one of your current doctors to get another of your current doctor’s records so that he or she is kept up to date about your treatment.
The long and short of it is that your doctor can get your records for free.
How does this help you? Once your doctor has gotten the records, your doctor can provide you with copies at no charge or a very minimal charge.
Obviously, your doctor cannot request the records for the purpose of providing them to you. But, if the purpose was solely for providing continuing medical care, once the records are in the doctor’s possession, the doctor is not obligated to charge you for copies of the records.
The gotcha is that you have to have a doctor who is enough on your side to provide copies of the records in his/her possession to you at no charge. In practice, this does not happen too often.
However, if you have a doctor who is very supportive of your Social Security claim, your doctor can save you A LOT of money by helping you get your medical records.
Note: this is Colorado specific, but other states may have similar regulations.