Medical Student Access to Electronic Medical Record (EMR)

The AAFP encourages teaching hospitals and clinical clerkship sites to allow medical student access to patient electronic medical records. Adequate medical student training depends on a student's ability to access relevant information available to other members of the care team, to document findings, to communicate with other providers, and to reflect independent clinical reasoning.

In addition, the AAFP recognizes the independence of each teaching site to develop policies regarding student access to electronic medical records with the goals to protect patients, recognize different EMR capacities, comply with federal and payor regulations, reduce administrative burden and to ensure appropriate reimbursement. Such policies might include, but are not limited to:

  1. Read-only access;
  2. Special designations of medical student documentation in the EMR;
  3. Medical student documentation outside the EMR;
  4. Co-signature requirements;
  5. Guidelines for acceptable parts of documentation by medical students and supervising physicians; and
  6. Development of EMR safeguards and/or templates to ensure institutional policies are met.

(2012 COD)