Protecting Patient Privacy in your CPP

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by Dr. Kelli Scott

This Peer Leader tip comes from Dr. Kellie Scott, a family physician in St. Thomas. Dr. Scott uses TELUS PS Suite.

The Cumulative Patient Profile (CPP) is an important tool in any medical chart. In primary care in particular, the CPP can be where we store some very private and personal information.  The CPP is also used to communicate with other care providers, and you may not wish to share ALL the information stored in your CPP with others when you send a referral, for example.

As well as being able to mark certain charts private (for example so that a particular person working in your office cannot access a family member’s chart) and being able to mark a certain note private (if a sensitive issue was discussed that needs to be documented, but is not necessary for everyone accessing the chart to be able to read), TELUS PS Suite EMR allows you to mark items in the CPP as private.

This feature means you can see all the details you’d want to track in a CPP, but the specialist receiving your CPP as part of a referral doesn’t receive irrelevant private information that the patient may not want shared in that context.  Think about referring to a general surgeon for a mole to be removed, or to a hematologist to ask for an opinion on some bloodwork abnormalities – they do not need information about previous suicide attempts or chlamydia infections, or child abuse and the patient may not expect you would be sharing this information with that provider.

Using this tool, here is an example of what I see when I look at the CPP:

And here is what gets sent with the referral when I attach a CPP:

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This is turned on by simply clicking on the CPP item and then choosing Patient à Modify Health Problem Privacy and you can set who has access to that problem within your clinic as well.

You can also decide to share the Reminders and Risk boxes (or not) in the printed CPP in the Settings à Preferences à Printing menu. 

When attaching the profile, there are also options for the format of what you are attaching. The “Short Format” is the most economical in terms of space and paper.  

Other EMRs may be able to mark certain information in the CPP as private as well.

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