Sept. 20th-22nd, 2019, CAREUM, Zurich, Switzerland

Challenge C

Whose EHR? Physician- vs. patient-led electronic health record


The potential of data for better health care is widely recognized. Starting from avoiding unnecessary repetitions of tests and examinations, automated warnings against potentially dangerous interactions of medication to the personalization of health care interventions on the basis of artificial intelligence. The key in order to realize this potential is the establishment and use of electronic health records (EHR) bringing all of the clinical data of patients together.


There is a fundamental dilemma with regards to the EHR: Patients claim their right to patient sovereignty, i.e., the right to administer their EHR entirely on their own – including the right to grant their physicians only partial access, the right to delete certain passages etc. Doctors, on the other hand, claim that they cannot rely on the EHR unless they can be sure that it is complete and nothing has been deleted. An unreliable EHR has the potential to make health care even more inefficient as doctors will make even more double exams and repeat tests in order to avoid the danger of liability law suits.

Actual Challenge

How can you reconcile these two contradictory claims: patient’s rights to full sovereignty over their EHR and doctors‘ needs for reliable and complete information in EHR? Leaning too much on one side will (probably) seriously hamper the acceptance of the EHR by the other – and thereby destroy the acceptance and readiness to use the EHR by either patients or doctors.


  • (Practising) physician
  • Optional: patient activist or chronically ill person („heavy user“)

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