Patients could gain right to find out who's seen their health records

Patients would be able to find out who has looked at their electronic medical records under a proposed rule opened up for public comment on Tuesday.

Patients would obtain the information by requesting an access report, which would document who electronically accessed and viewed their protected health information. Although providers are currently required to track access to such information, they don't have to tell patients.

"This proposed rule represents an important step in our continued efforts to promote accountability across the health care system, ensuring that providers properly safeguard private health information," said Georgina Verdugo, director of the Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights. "We need to protect peoples' rights so that they know how their health information has been used or disclosed."