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Giving permission for your medical records to be shared with others

Electronic data-exchange is an increasingly common means of sharing medical records. The use of automated databases enables us to share your medical records easily and securely with healthcare professionals in other hospitals and healthcare institutions. This may happen, for example, if you are referred to another hospital, if your healthcare-provider wishes to discuss your health status at a multidisciplinary meeting, or if you wish to seek a second opinion.

Data-sharing means that all healthcare professionals treating you have easy access to the documents and images used by us. However, your medical records may be shared with by means of electronic data-exchange only if you have given your express permission for us to do so. Without your consent, we are not entitled to share your medical records with third parties through an electronic data-exchange system.

Your physician must clearly explain what it is you are consenting to. You can then either agree to your records being shared electronically or withhold your consent. Your physician will make a note of your decision in your electronic patient file. If you wish, you can obtain a list of all parties who have requested your data. You can change your mind at any time.

If you have not yet given your consent, or if you wish to withdraw your consent, you should go to the Patient and Healthcare Service Desk (Frontservice Patiënt- & Zorgadministratie). You can also ring +31 10 703 13 41 or use the contact form below. You will soon also be able to use the electronic patient portal (My Erasmus MC) to withdraw or withhold your consent.


Physicians, nurses and other hospital staff need to have access to your medical records in order to treat you. They are obliged not to disclose any information about you that is communicated to them in a professional capacity, and to deal appropriately with data in medical records and computer files. Only hospital staff directly involved in your treatment have access to your medical records. Statutory and other regulations on confidentiality apply in situations that bring us into contact with government authorities (such as the courts or police) and insurance companies. In case of doubt, the patient’s interests always prevail.

Presence of other people during treatment or an examination

You also have a right to ‘spatial privacy’. In principle, unless you have given your consent to this, a treatment may not be administered in the presence of people other than those healthcare professionals who are directly involved. Certain exceptions to this rule apply at university medical centres. Because of their status as educational institutes, more than one physician or nurse may be present during your treatment. Your physician shares relevant data only with members of Erasmus MC staff and third parties who are involved in your treatment. Your data are treated confidentially, and your physician may not discuss them in the presence of third parties. The rules governing the use of personal data for medical research are outlined below.

Lodging an objection

In certain cases, it is assumed that you have given permission for data from your medical records to be disclosed or used. If you give permission for a referral to another healthcare-provider, we assume that this means that you also agree to the disclosure of the relevant data from your medical records. Data from your medical records are also used to improve the quality of care. If you do not want us to use your data for these purposes, you can lodge an objection. This also applies to the use of your data or leftover tissue for research purposes.

Go back to rights and responsibilities.

Any questions or comments?

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