Getting More Patients to Say 'YES!'

October 17th, 2016 - Consent forms give patients the ability to grant or deny consent. Here’s how you can help them make the right choice.

The HealthlinkNY Health Information Exchange (HIE) can save providers time and money, and help them coordinate care with other providers by sharing electronic medical records. But the HIE’s effectiveness still depends on the paper consent forms signed by your patients. Unless patients grant your organization permission to view their HealthlinkNY medical records, the HIE’s trove of data is off-limits to your organization, hindering your productivity and the patient’s care.

So, how do you get patients to say YES to HealthlinkNY? Here’s how:

  1. Include a HealthlinkNY consent form with the other forms you present to patients at check-in. The form explains that giving consent helps the provider collect medical records from the different places where the patient receives healthcare.
  2. Prepare a “script” for frontline staff so they can encourage patients to give consent.  Staff should make the following points:
    • As your provider, we want to know everything possible about your medical history so we can give you the best care.
    • When you give consent, our office will be able look up your medical records online. We will be able to see your test results and won’t have to duplicate tests you’ve had recently.
    • We’ll be able to share information securely with all of the people who care for you: your primary care physician, specialists, and physical/occupational therapists, as well as clinicians at hospitals and rehabilitation facilities. This ensures that everyone knows everything they can about your health.
    • Your records are very safe because only your providers can see them. HealthlinkNY uses the latest and the best encryption to protect your information, and audits provider records regularly.
    • In a short while, you too will be able to access all of these records by signing up for the HealthlinkNY Patient Portal, but only if you give consent.
    • You can change your decision at any time.
  3. Involve clinicians in the process. Have the frontline staff red flag patients who do not sign the form or deny consent. During the exam, a nurse or physician can say, “I see you have not given your consent for us to access your medical records from your other providers. Do you have any concerns about allowing us to coordinate your care? It is very safe and secure, and would help us get a more complete picture of your health.”
Want to learn more? Attend any of HealthlinkNY’s online consent education webinars that are available through our website. Consent trainings also can be requested at, or by emailing