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    Cristy Good
    Cristy Good, MPH, MBA, CPC, CMPE

    Patient consent requirements for an AI scribe in a medical practice can vary depending on the specific practice and jurisdiction. However, it is important to note that patient consent is generally required for the use of any technology that involves the collection, storage, or sharing of patient health information. 

    Here are some key points to consider when deciding how to move forward with AI: 

    • Verbal or written informed consent: Some medical practices may require only verbal consent from patients to use an AI scribe, while others may require written consent. Clearly communicate to patients that an AI scribe will be involved in their healthcare process. Explain the purpose, benefits, and potential risks of using AI scribes. Provide information about how the AI scribe will be used, what data will be collected, stored, used and how it will be protected. Provide detailed information about the AI scribe's capabilities, limitations, and potential impact on their healthcare. Allow patients to ask questions and address any concerns they may have. 
    • Education and awareness: Educate patients about the benefits of AI scribes and how they can enhance the quality of care. Help patients understand that AI scribes are designed to assist healthcare professionals and improve efficiency, accuracy, and patient outcomes. Maintain open lines of communication with patients throughout their healthcare journey. Inform them of any changes or updates to the use of AI scribes and address any concerns that may arise. 
    • Opt-out option: Give patients the option to decline the use of AI scribes if they are uncomfortable with it. Respect their decision and provide alternative methods for documentation if necessary. 
    • HIPAA regulations: The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in the United States does not specifically require patient consent for the use of AI scribes. However, it does require healthcare providers to have contracts in place with any third-party companies involved in handling patient data, ensuring that patient information is protected. 
    • Remote scribes vs. AI scribes: It is worth noting that remote scribes, who are real-life people listening in on medical visits and taking notes, may have different consent requirements compared to AI scribes. Remote scribes may require explicit patient consent due to the potential violation of patient comfort and trust, as they are physically present during the visit. 
    • Training and certification: The AI scribing industry is still relatively unregulated, and training and certification requirements may vary. It is important for healthcare providers to ensure that any AI scribe technology they use meets industry standards and safeguards patient data. 

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