presently medical records have a mandatory retention of 7 years, or for minors, 7 years after then become majors, which is defined as 18 years old
thereafter, paper records were routinely purged, and even records only a few years old were moved to storage, which was often at a different physical location
despite the feds enthusiasm, no-one has educated us (the interface) with where the info will actually "happen"
equally, from a medico-legal standpoint, as the receivers of information, we are supposed to instantaneously "know" the content and thus take on the responsibility for any failure in assimilating it into a current issue, even though it may be from years ago and not actually ever told to us personally
thus we are currently not inclined to have patients hand us an old pile of notes should their previous gp retire, or they simply choose us - either it's a simple summary (which might be the myhealth idea), or we require them to sit in on a paid consult to sift through wheat is often a large amount of mostly irrelevant data
like other paperwork, the insinuation that "well, can't you do that in your spare time" neglects the reality that as a busy gp, i don't have spare time, and if i do, it's MY time, not for more unpaid workload, of which there is already plenty (checking results, reading replies to referral letters and formulating a plan for care)
if people complain, i usually check their occupation, and suggest that they might barter - "oh, i see you're a senior chef... i'll do it while you rip round to my place and prepare dinner for me..."
when we were first dong work on the "core data set", it was clear that the useful things would be - age / sex / names / allergies / current (and past) medication / known illness / surgical procedures / injuries / any old pathology and investigations (pure data, not rambling notes) / concise reports from senior parties
even wrt pathology - numerous providers mean comparison of cumulative numbers is nigh on impossible - the data isn't granular or even often showing prior results from the same lab on the current sheet
all that stuff WOULD be useful, and even moreso if the medical record in the gp rooms was a standardised interface - which it isn't; swap practice and you may have a whole new system to comprehend - not unlike windoze . mac . linux... not dissimilar, but nothing like "the same"
enough ! it's my day off, and i don't really need the aggravation of a reasonable concept delivered with all the rationality of a tony abbott speech