We get this question a lot from our clients. If you still use paper charts, or if you still have paper charts from before you implemented your EHR, you may not know how long you need to maintain the medical records. Here are a few guidelines to help you decide what to do with all that paper.
HIPAA rules require HIPAA records to be kept for 6 years after the last date of service or entry into the medical record.
CMS requires hospitals to keep their records for at least 5 years after the submission of their closed cost reports.
Medicare Managed Care Programs
MMCP require providers to keep patient's medical records for 10 years.
Your State Decides How Long You Need To Keep Your Records
Medical record retention times are governed by individual states. If your state laws require longer record retention, the state law will preempt any of the above federal regulations.
Contact us if you need help finding your state regulations regarding medical record retention times.