Record Locator Service (RLS) Diagram
The Record Locator Service is part of a Health Information Exchange. When a patient's medical records are requested, the RLS moves out onto the network to find all medical records of that individual that are located within the membership of the Health Information Exchange (HIE), typically made up of hospitals, health plans and clinics. The RLS then lists the locations of all the medical records found on the patient, revealing information about the patient simply by listing the location.
Some states have patient consent requirements. Other states have none. This diagram was made by CCHF during the 2007 Minnesota legislative session to show how the RLS might work and why patient consent should be required. Despite CCHF's objections, Minnesota law now allows the search to take place without patient consent, but does not allow viewing of the results by the patient's doctor without patient consent. TO VIEW THE DIAGRAM IN FULL, CLICK READ MORE.