Dr Jensen responds

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 52, No. 2, March 2010, Page 65 Letters

I appreciate Dr Leduc’s comments. Discussion is always valuable and this topic has significant complexities at times.
My article was written to provide a brief overview of some of the issues surrounding authorizations and re­quests for medical legal reports and copies of medical records. Most of the time, such requests can be dealt with directly. 

However, there have been times in my practice when I have received a request for records and have been concerned with sending information of a sensitive nature, and, in my opinion, not relevant to the insurance claim or matter at hand. 

Solving this dilemma was not always straightforward. I doubt that my experience is unique and so I touched on the situation within the article. 

I did refer to the appropriate sections of the two privacy acts and the guidelines of the College of Phy­sicians and Surgeons of British Columbia and the Canadian Medical Protective Association for further information.

The topics of medical-legal reports, ethical and professional obligations, and privacy issues are complex. I agree with Dr Leduc that a subsequent article may be necessary to provide more clarification.

Dr Leduc appears to be a physician who performs within his ethical and legal obligations and most likely represents the majority of physicians. 

Within 30 minutes of receiving a copy of his e-mail, I received correspondence within ICBC regarding a physician who has not complied with requests for medical information for over a year, despite repeated requests. This is not an isolated incident.

In my previous article, I did not mean to be scolding, and I apologize for the misunderstanding. If the article spurred some physicians to complete outstanding CL19s or medical legal reports, I would consider that a positive secondary outcome. 
As always, I look forward to receiving your emails at DrLaura.Jensen@ICBC.com.
—Laura Jensen, MD
ICBC Medical Community Liaison

Laura Jensen, MD,. Dr Jensen responds. BCMJ, Vol. 52, No. 2, March, 2010, Page(s) 65 - Letters.

Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.

About the ICMJE and citation styles

The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.

An alternate version of ICMJE style is to additionally list the month an issue number, but since most journals use continuous pagination, the shorter form provides sufficient information to locate the reference. The NLM now lists all authors.

BCMJ standard citation style is a slight modification of the ICMJE/NLM style, as follows:

  • Only the first three authors are listed, followed by "et al."
  • There is no period after the journal name.
  • Page numbers are not abbreviated.

For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit www.icmje.org

BCMJ Guidelines for Authors

Leave a Reply