AU: Patients' private medical records on show

Sue Dunlevy reports:

MEDICARE bureaucrats will get access to patients’ private medical records as part of a new crackdown on doctors who overcharge Medicare for their services.

Doctors will have to hand over patient records to auditors to prove they carried out procedures for which they claimed a Medicare payment.

The measure is part of a new policy to audit 2500 doctors a year to make sure they are claiming the correct Medicare payments and is expected to save taxpayers $148.7 million over four years.

But the policy is being opposed by doctors and is likely to be of concern to patients whose medical privacy will be compromised.

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