Appl Clin Inform 2020; 11(01): 166-171
DOI: 10.1055/s-0040-1701679
Case Report
Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York

Are You In or Are You Out? Provider Note Sharing in Pediatrics

Mario Bialostozky
1   Department of Emergency Medicine, Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, San Diego, California, United States
2   Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Diego, California, United Sates
Jeannie S. Huang
2   Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Diego, California, United Sates
3   Division of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego, San Diego, California, United States
Cynthia L. Kuelbs
2   Department of Pediatrics, University of California, San Diego, California, United Sates
4   Rady Children’s Hospital-San Diego, San Diego, California, United States
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

20 October 2019

02 January 2020

Publication Date:
04 March 2020 (online)


Background The OpenNotes initiative launched an international movement aimed at making health care more transparent by improving communication with, and access to, information for patients through provider note sharing. Little has been written either on provider note sharing in pediatric and adolescent populations or on the impact of system default settings versus voluntary provider note sharing.

Objective We describe our journey as a pediatric integrated delivery network to default share notes in ambulatory specialty practices not only with parent proxies but also with teens and discuss the methods that led to a successful implementation.

Methods Retrospective analysis of every ambulatory shareable medical provider note written in pediatric subspecialty clinics within an integrated pediatric delivery network from April 2017 through March 2019.

Results From April 2017 to February 2018, a total of 221,655 notes were shareable based on organizational policies, yet only 224 (0.1%) were actually shared with patients and families. After implementing a system of default release of notes from March 2018 to January 2019, a total of 224,960 notes were shareable, of which 191,379 (85%) were shared.

Conclusion Requiring providers to take an action to share notes (opt-in) results in few notes being shared while requiring providers to take an action to not share notes (opt-out) results in high levels of note sharing. We demonstrate that default release of notes in pediatric organizations to both proxies and teens is not only achievable but also likely to lead to increased provider note sharing with patients without obvious negative impact on providers or the organization.

Protection of Human and Animal Subjects

Our project was performed in compliance with the World Medical Association Declaration of Helsinki on Ethical Principles for Medical Research Involving Human Subjects, and was reviewed by the University of California, San Diego Institutional Review Board and given a waiver as a quality improvement project.

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