Injured worker cannot force IME doctor to turn over x-rays and records
Jennifer Paul "allegedly" suffered a shoulder injury at work. Her employer sent her to the Glendale Neurological Associates for an IME. She then attempted to subpoena her records, including x-rays, form Glendale, but the doctors refused to produce them. She filed a lawsuit to obtain them, citing the Medical Records Access Act and the Consumer Protection Act. The trial judge ruled that she couldn't obtain her own x-rays because the IME doctor wasn't "treating or diagnosing" her.
She appealed and two of the Republican judges on the Court of Appeals Judges Christopher Murray and Mark Boonstra, issued a troubling opinion upholding the doctors' right to refuse the injured worker access to the studies of her own body, despite the access-to-records act, because they didn't examine her for purposes of treatment or diagnosis. At that same time, they upheld the lower court's decision that the Consumer Protection Act didn't apply because the doctors' actions were "not 'trade or commerce."
To her everlasting credit, Judge Servitto issued a blistering dissent rejecting the majority's arguement that they could perform diagnositic tests on Paul, for purposes of "diagnosis," without coming under the rules allowing access to medical records. She noted the broad definitions adopted by the legislature in defining "patient", "health care" and "medical records" under the various applicable statutes, including the Michigan Public Health Code.