(210 ILCS 85/6.17)
Protection of and confidential access to medical records
(a) Every hospital licensed under this Act shall develop a medical record
for each of its patients as required by the Department by rule.
(b) All information regarding a hospital patient gathered by the hospital's
medical staff and its agents and employees shall be the property and
responsibility of the hospital and must be protected from inappropriate
disclosure as provided in this Section.
(c) Every hospital shall preserve its medical records in a format and for a
duration established by hospital policy and for not less than 10 years,
provided that if the hospital has been notified in writing by an attorney
before the expiration of the 10 year retention period that there is litigation
pending in court involving the record of a particular patient as possible
evidence and that the patient is his client or is the person who has instituted
such litigation against his client, then the hospital shall retain the record
of that patient until notified in writing by the plaintiff's attorney, with the
approval of the defendant's attorney of record, that the case in court
such record has been concluded or for a period of 12 years from the date that
the record was produced, whichever occurs first in time.
(d) No member of a hospital's medical staff and no agent or employee of a
hospital shall disclose the nature or details of services provided to patients,
except that the information may be disclosed to the patient, persons authorized
by the patient, the party making treatment decisions, if the patient
is incapable of making decisions regarding the health services provided, those
parties directly involved with providing treatment to the patient or processing
the payment for that treatment, those parties responsible for peer review,
utilization review or quality assurance, risk management, or
defense of claims
brought against the hospital arising out of the care, and those parties
required to be notified under the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act, the
Illinois Sexually Transmissible Disease Control Act, or where otherwise
authorized or required by law.
(e) The hospital's medical staff members and the hospital's agents and
employees may communicate, at any time and in any fashion, with legal counsel
the hospital concerning the patient medical record privacy and retention
requirements of this Section and any care or treatment they provided or
assisted in providing to any patient within the scope of their employment
or affiliation with the hospital.
(e-5) Notwithstanding subsections (d) and (e), for actions filed on or
after January 1, 2004, after a complaint for healing art malpractice is
served upon the hospital or upon its agents or employees, members of the
hospital's medical staff who are not actual or alleged agents, employees, or
apparent agents of the hospital may not communicate with legal counsel for the
hospital or with risk management of the hospital concerning the claim alleged
the complaint for healing art malpractice against the hospital except with the
patient's consent or in discovery authorized by the Code of Civil Procedure or
the Supreme Court rules. For the purposes of this subsection (e-5),
"hospital" includes a hospital affiliate as defined in subsection (b) of
Section 10.8 of this Act.
(f) Each hospital licensed under this Act shall provide its
designated organ procurement agency and any tissue bank with which it has an
agreement with access to the medical records of deceased patients for the
(1) estimating the hospital's organ and tissue
(g) All hospital and patient information, interviews, reports,
memoranda, and other data obtained or created by a tissue bank or federally
designated organ procurement agency from the medical records review described
in subsection (f) shall be privileged, strictly confidential, and
the purposes put forth in subsection (f) of this Section and shall
admissible as evidence nor discoverable in an action of any kind in court or
before a tribunal, board, agency, or person.
(h) Any person who, in good faith, acts in accordance with the
of this Section shall not be subject to any type of civil or criminal liability
discipline for unprofessional conduct for those actions under any
(i) Any individual who wilfully or wantonly discloses hospital or medical
record information in violation of
this Section is guilty of a Class A
misdemeanor. As used in this subsection, "wilfully or wantonly" means a course
of action that shows an actual or deliberate intention to cause harm or that,
if not intentional, shows an utter indifference to or conscious disregard for
the safety of others or their property.
(j) The changes to this Section made by this amendatory Act of the 93rd
General Assembly apply to any action filed on or after January 1, 2004.
(Source: P.A. 93-492, eff. 1-1-04.)