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July 27, 2011

DIY Medical Records in the Cloud

Burlington Prosthodontist Dr. Bentley Merrick made me teeth much better than the ones I'd grown on my own. At the end of the two-and-a-half year process, he emailed me a set of x-rays and pictures showing how the whole structure is put together and the special tools he made to screw teeth into abutments which screw into implants. "I know you travel a lot," he said; "hopefully nothing'll go wrong; but, if it does, whomever you see for treatment will know what to do."

"Cool", I said, although I didn't like the thought of anything going wrong.

I put the all the files into a folder on my computer so that they'll be available when I need them. Then I thought about the time my computer was stolen... and realized that's not a problem.

My files are backed up nightly by a service called Mozy and go somewhere into a cloud. I can retrieve the files from any computer anywhere; I don't need my computer, just my password. Even better, Mozy has file-retrieval apps for both my droid and Mary's iPhone; we don't even need a computer to find out how to reassemble my mouth if the need arises.

Of course all medical records ought to be available online but they're not. Now that I know how to put my records where I can get them if I need them, I intend to ask my doctor and anyone else who treats me for full records. Whenever I get anything new, I'll simply put it in a folder with a reasonably descriptive name including a date and know that it'll go to the cloud with that evening's backup and available either on my computer or from any PC or phone with a data connection. Should've thought of it before.

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