Medical practices house some of the most important information that exists. Patient medical records and important business documents are necessary components of a medical practice.
Family physicians, dentists and psychiatrists all must follow guidelines and laws to remain compliant with confidential records at their medical practice.
With all of this information at stake, what happens when a medical practice closes? Whether a doctor is retiring, the office is moving to a new location or the practice is closing, practice managers and physicians must take important steps to make sure they are properly handling documents and records. Here are the first steps to take to prepare important records for a medical practice closure.
Safeguard patient medical records
The patients are the main priority of a medical practice in operation, so it’s no wonder that the first concern for dissolving a medical practice should be the welfare of the patients. When a practice closes, the physician, or medical group, is responsible for making appropriate arrangements for all medical records, regardless of whether the records are in paper or electronic format. To avoid the possibility of a lawsuit after a physician has left or retired, hiring an experienced, qualified party to handle the authorized release of information and retention of the records is extremely important.
What to look for in a records management company
Rather than searching for several companies to help with the practice’s transition, look for a full-service, off-site records management company. At Gilmore Services, our off-site records storage division can take care of picking up your patient records, whether in files, boxes or discs, and begin a custodial relationship where we keep and maintain the medical records for the retention time set forth by the medical practice.
We also ensure that copies of medical records will only be released to the medical practice’s patient, or patient’s authorized representative. No medical practice closure is the same, so it’s important to look for a company that can work with you to find a custom solution for what you need.
Remember, records don’t only need proper management, but they also need proper destruction. Once the records have met the end of their retention period, make sure records are shredded according to NAID (National Association for Information Destruction) standards, by a NAID certified shredding company.
Is your medical practice closing? We are here to help you simplify the process and ensure that you’re not only compliant with industry regulations, but that your patients have safe and easy access to their records.