Macarthur doctor urges locals to check with their GP before opting out of My Health Record

Dr Mohammed Hasan from Campbelltown's Myhealth Medical. Picture: Chris Lane
Dr Mohammed Hasan from Campbelltown's Myhealth Medical. Picture: Chris Lane

If you’re having doubts about the Australian Government’s new My Health Record scheme, you should check with your GP before opting out.

That’s the message from Myhealth Medical’s Dr Mohammed Hasan.

The opt-out period for the new online medical record – which will be created for all Australians who do not elect to opt out – has been extended to November 15.

But Macarthur Square-based GP Dr Hasan said My Health Record was a “useful tool” for GPs to keep track of their patients’ medical history and he encouraged locals not to be too hasty with their decision.

“My Health Record is an important tool to help doctors fill in the gaps in people’s memories,” he said.

“It increases consulting efficiency as doctors can spend less time doing data entry and administrative work, and therefore spend more time focusing on the actual care of the person in front of them.

“Often people are on a lot of medications and if they are changing GPs or travelling it is beneficial to have their updated medical history online for doctors to access.”

Dr Hasan said asking patients to rely on their own memories for important medical information could be dangerous.

“If they misremember their dosage, with blood pressure medication for example, that could cause problems,” he said.

“Too high a dosage and they might pass out, or too low a dosage and their medication will not work effectively and they might have a stroke.”

Dr Hasan said the My Health Record could also be useful for overcoming language barriers.

However, he understands that not all Australians are keen to have their medical history online.

He acknowledged many people held privacy concerns and were wary of allowing unfamiliar doctors to access them.

“I think the most important message is to speak to your local GP and discuss if having a My Health Record profile is right for you,” he said.

“Together you can really decide if My Health Record is the best path for your medical needs.

“If you have a complex medical history, it may be better for you to keep the record.”

For more information on My Health Record, visit www.myhealthrecord.gov.au.

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