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When Patients Record Conversations with Doctors: Appropriate or Not?


Smartphones are making it easier for patients to record conversations with their physicians - sometimes secretly.

Have any of your patients recorded your conversations with them? The answer may be yes, and you may not even know it.

In a recent blog appearing on KevinMD, physician Deep Ramachandran wrote that this has, in fact, happened to him.

"Smartphones have made it all too easy for patients to secretly record conversations with their healthcare providers," he wrote. "Simply hit a button, lay it innocently down by your side in the office or hospital, and patients get an instant video or audio capture of a conversation with their physician."

While some physicians may be opposed to such recordings, due to the fear that the patient has negative motivations (such as that the patient will take the recording to a malpractice attorney), Ramachandran said that it may be beneficial for patients to have recordings of their visits with physicians.

For example, if the patient is able to listen to the recording post-visit, that may improve his ability to adhere to the physician's treatment recommendations.

How do you feel about patients recording your conversations with them?

Recording is never appropriate; it raises unnecessary malpractice risks.
As long as the patient asks for my permission, I have no problem with it.
Recording could improve patient care. I am OK with it even if the patient does not ask my permission.
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