The availability of online medical records varies based on which health care provider the patient uses. Many providers offer a secure online system for patients to review records and check test results, as well as send messages to their doctors and keep track of upcoming appointments.
Federal law requires health care providers to fulfill patient requests for medical records electronically if the provider has the capability to do so. Many providers use electronic health records that patients and other providers can access. These systems are required to be secure, and only providers involved in a particular patient's care, or who have the patient's permission, are given access to the information.