Health Information History Center

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Dedicated to preserving the history of medical records and the evolution of the health information profession in the United States

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This digital archive covers a range of topics including stories of the first medical record librarians and degree programs in the United States, the progression of paper medical records to electronic health records (EHRs), early advocacy efforts concerning patient health information rights, and the role of health literacy in accessing, understanding, and using health information. 

Health Information History By Year

The Health of CitiesThe Selma Times. December 1, 1901.


Stuver, E. Does Vaccination Prevent Smallpox? The Fort Collins Express. April 23, 1902. 


Myers, GW. Notes on the Bulletin Work of One Library: Address at the Meeting of the Association of Medical Librarians, Saratoga, June 10, 1902Bull Assoc Med Libr. 1902 Jul;1(3-4):33-5.


Dr. Dejarnette on the Stand. Stanton Daily Leader. April 22, 1907. 


Tuberculosis in Hawaii. The Honolulu Advertiser. December 9, 1908. 


Expert’s Report on State Hospital. Weekly Clarion Ledger. January 21, 1909.

Myers, Grace W. Care of Hospital Records. Royal College of Surgeons of England. 1911.


Hospital Records. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. December 4, 1911. 


Health - Our Greatest National AssetThe Missoulian. June 14, 1914. 


Health Information Among Laborers in City Work Sought. The Oregon Daily Journal. August 8, 1915.


Disobeying Rules of HealthThe Prague Record. February 24, 1916. 


Improve Health Boost for CitiesKnoxville Sentinel. November 24, 1917. 


Health Witnesses Attack M’BrideThe New York Times. April 24, 1918. 


Colored Health and Literacy Meeting at Walla Courthouse. Keowee Courier. August 14, 1918. 


Noted Sociologist Tells Problems Faced by Nation. The Eugene Guard. July 25, 1919.

History at Hospital. Fort Scott Tribune. March 11, 1920. 


First Health Lesson. Franklin Repository. April 3, 1920.


Caswall, Muriel. Her Records Great Help to Physicians. Boston Post. June 26th, 1921.


Mrs. Grace W. Meyers. Bakersfield Morning Echo. July 6th, 1921.


Librarians Discuss Books for Hospitals. The Boston Globe. October 24th, 1922.


Humanitarian Use for Canceled Stamps. Alton Evening Telegraph. January 31st, 1922.

Health and Literacy. Jefferson City Post Tribune. April 10th, 1930.


Three Thousand Surgeons Meet. Republican and Herald. October 13th, 1930.


Refuse to Reveal List of Patients at N.O. Hospital. The Shreveport Journal. August 3rd, 1932. 


Medical Librarian Group Will Meet. The Pasadena Post. September 19th, 1933.


Numbers For Diseases. The Cincinnati Post. April 9th, 1934.


Medical Record Librarians Hold Meet at Local Hospital. Times Tribune. July 12th, 1937.


Hospital Right to Open Files is Debated Here. The Record. November 18th, 1937.


WPA Teaches Women How to Aid Doctors. The Brooklyn Citizen. October 17th, 1938.

Is Baby’s Birth Recorded? American Medical Association. 1940.


Blakeslee, Howard W. First Draftees Break All-Time Health Mark. The Record-Argus. December 9, 1940. 


American Medical Librarians Open Sessions Today. The Boston Globe. November 4th, 1941.


Know Their Medical Nomenclature. The Durham Sun. July 20, 1942.


Busy Future is Predicted for Librarians. The Times Dispatch. May 31st, 1945. 


Women Create Growing Field. The Mobile Journal. June 8th, 1945.


25 Librarians Get Hospital Record Study. Democrat and Chronicle. September 10th, 1946.


Incoming Laborers Show High Health and Literacy RatesThe Monitor. April 23, 1947. 


Davis, Ruth G. Medical Records Kept for Patients’ Welfare. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 13th, 1947. 


Vets’ Medical Records Used For Research. The Afton American. February 26th, 1948. 


Record Keeper Plays a Tremendous Role. The Indianapolis News. March 12th, 1948. 


Bremer, Adolph. Quality of Hospital Measured By Its Medical Record Library. The Winona Daily News. December 3rd, 1948. 


Foderaro, Sal. Medical Record Librarian Notices Changing World. The Daily Record. March 2nd, 1949.

Indian Villages Get Audio Visual Facts on Health Literacy. The Fresno Bee. May 31, 1950. 


Signup For FJC Adult Education Classes Begins. The Fresno Bee. September 13, 1951. 


Haenszel, W. Role of the Medical Record Librarian in Public Health Statistics: Summary of Panel DiscussionAmerican Journal of Public Health. 1953;43(9).


Work of Medical Librarians Little Known but Important. Arizona Daily Star. November 12th, 1953.


Medical Record Librarians NeededJAMA. 1954;156(11):1084.


Figures Seem Far Away. The Columbian. May 5, 1954. 


Complete Life, Sick Record Of Patients is Maintained. The Hastings Daily Tribune. May 12th, 1954. 


Medical Record Librarians Tour New Hospital Here; Sessions to End Today. Albuquerque Journal. August 16th, 1954.


Medical Record Librarian Keeps Data for Hospitals. Evening Star. September 26th, 1954. 


Teachers For Tomorrow. The Dothan Eagle. November 10, 1954.


Medical Record Librarian Has Big Role In Service to Patient. The Daily Plainsman. June 1st, 1955.


Microfilm Records For Every Patient. Carroll Daily Times Herald. June 8th, 1955. 


New Career Program for Women. The Kansas City Times. April 27th, 1956.


Miller, Earl. Service to Professional Staff No. 1 Medical Records Function. The Record-Argus. November 19, 1956. 


Baird, Virginia. Mrs. Fred Thomas Loves Hospital Work. Lansing State Journal. May 4, 1958. 


Stokoe, Sonia. Medical Records May Save YouArizona Republic. April 2nd, 1959.


Edgerton, A. H. Thousands of Nation’s Hospitals Need Medical Record Librarians. Wisconsin State Journal. April 30th, 1959.


Fatton, Wendy. Medical Record Librarian Finds Career Interesting. The Leader-Post. June 16th, 1959.


Medical Records Librarian Course Set at University. Columbian-Progress. October 8th, 1959. 


Hamilton, Eleanor. Medical Records Tell Life Story of Every Patient. Sunday Gazette-Mail. November 29th, 1959. 

Weekley, Juanita. Librarians of Medical World Have Come a Long Way Since ‘28. Birmingham Post-Herald. January 22nd, 1960.


Medical Record Aid to Both Patient, Doctor. Chippewa Herald-Telegram. May 7th, 1962.


India Gets U.S. Cash For Health, LiteracyThe Daily Item. May 23, 1962. 


Williams, Annie Lee. Medical Records Offer Challenge if you Qualify. Times Record News. July 18th, 1962.


Ladies Work Behind Scenes at Hospital. The Morning Herald. May 16th, 1963. 


Moroney, MC. The Doctor’s Paper Work: A Medical Record Librarian’s View. Can Med Assoc J. Sept 1964;91(12):655-8.


Werne, Jo. She Backstops Busy Doctor. The Miami Herald. October 15th, 1964.


Healy, Paul. LBJ Asks World Fight For Health, Literacy. Daily News. February 3, 1966. 


Medical Record Science is Offered at St. Mary. The Lincoln Star. July 9th, 1967.


Love, Robert L. A Comprehensive Project to Develop a Complete Curriculum in the Area of Medical Records Technician. U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. Feb 1968.  


Medical Record Librarian is a Skilled Professional. Manitowoc Herald-Times. May 14th, 1968. 


Lain, F. J. Data Keepers on Medical Team Now in High Demand. El Paso Times. April 23, 1969.


So You Want to Be…A Medical Record Librarian. Oakland Tribune. September 25th, 1969.

Hospital Administrator Voices Support for Bill. Guam Daily News. January 17th, 1970.


Roesch, Roberta. Doctors Make it Hectic. The Record. June 7th, 1970. 


Medical Record Librarian. The Ottawa Journal. May 5th, 1972. 


Medical Librarian Role Changing in Health Field. The Leader-Post. May 19th, 1972. 


For The Record, It’s a Good Job. The Age. February 23rd, 1973.


Snider, Arthur J. How confidential are medical records? Press and Sun-Bulletin. September 18th, 1976.


Report Cites Wide Abuse of Medical Records. The Courier-Journal. January 13th, 1977. 


Burrous, Ric. How Confidential is Patient’s Data? The Daily Journal. January 26th, 1977. 


Hendin, David. Who Owns Medical Records? Fort Worth Star-Telegram. August 3rd, 1977. 


Sessions to Discuss Medical Records. The Salt Lake Tribune. May 17th, 1978. 


Patient’s Right to View Own Records Fought For. News-Journal. August 22nd, 1978.


Farnan, Jackie. Medical Records Access Ruling Debated. Democrat and Chronicle. November 3rd, 1978. 


Miller, Jana. Group’s Concern: Medical Record Confidentiality. Lincoln Journal Star. November 6th, 1978.


Stokes, Bruce. When What’s Needed is an Ounce of Prevention. The Record. June 7, 1979. 


Medical Secrets: Forget it. The San Francisco Examiner. June 27th, 1979. 


Hunt, Terrence. Medical Data Use By Businesses Aired. The Orlando Sentinel. June 27th, 1979. 


Bosses Invade Privacy of Employees’ Medical Records. Oakland Tribune. June 28th, 1979.

Smith, Ruth Baird. The Census Bureau Is Counting On You. The Boston Globe. January 27, 1980. 


Brosnahan. Medical Records Access Urged. Star-Phoenix. November 24, 1980. 


Hale, Ellen. Confidentiality Jeopardized By Computers. The Olympian. February 1, 1981. 


Foresees ‘Golden Age’. The Daily News-Journal. April 29, 1982.


AP. Privacy of Hospital Records Endangered, Administrator Says. The Daily Republican-Register. January 3, 1984.


Wellness Check Offers Health Tips. The Lewiston Daily Sun. January 9, 1985.


Patient’s Rights in the U.S. Johnson City Press. June 9, 1987. 


Shirley, Steve. State Chalks Up a First. The Independent-Record. September 13, 1987. 


Seaman, Maryellen. Patients Can See Medical Records. The Post-Star. March 12, 1988.


Sweeney, Frank. Students in the Field of Medical Records: You’re in the Money. The Observer. April 20, 1989.


Seeaman, Maryellen. New State Law Assures Patients Access to own Medical Records. The Post-Star. August 11, 1989. 

Medicare Patients Need to Know Rights Before Hospitalization. Austin American-Statesman. July 5th, 1991.


Mosley, Barbara W. Sharper Focus on What Job Entails Can Be as Easy as a Name Change. Tallahasse Democrat. September 8th, 1993.


Kleiman, Carol. Medical Record Administrator Does Many Jobs. The San Francisco Examiner. November 14, 1993.


Kleinman, Carol. Medical Data Made Accessible. The Orlando Sentinel. July 3rd, 1994.


Donahue, Paul. Medical Records May Confuse. The Oshkosh Northwestern. April 6th 1995.


Freedman, Liz. New Brochure Helps Explain Medical Records. The Naples Daily News. April 30th, 1997.


Congress to Tackle Lack of Privacy in Medical Records. South Florida Sun Sentinel. November 30th, 1997.


Lane, Laura. Illiteracy Can Be Dangerous To Your Health. The Kansas City Star. December 22, 1997. 


Accessing Medical Records on the Web. Okmulgee Daily Times. October 18th, 1998.

Petrakos, Chris. Private Matters. Chicago Tribune. November 5th, 2000.


O’Harrow Jr., Robert. Medical Privacy: Exception to a Rule. The Boston Globe. January 21st, 2001.


The Computerized Patient Record: A Full Picture of Your Health Status. The Lexington Herald-Leader. August 9th, 2001.


Speir, Martha. Medical Privacy: Your Rights and Responsibilities. Daily Republican-Register. March 7th, 2003.


Neergaard, Lauren. Report Cites Americans’ Lack of ‘Health Literacy. The Boston Globe. April 9th, 2004.


MacDonald, John A. Gap in Medical Understanding Called Danger to Public Health. The Baltimore Sun. April 9th 2004.


Slogoff, Stephen. Computers in the Exam Room Will Improve Your Care. The Life. June 2nd, 2004.


Duncan, Marlin. Low Health Literacy Can Bring High Costs. Standard-Speaker. February 18th, 2004.


Neergaard, Lauren. Kids with Cancer Reflect Need: Computerized Overhaul Sought for Health Records. Sun Sentinel. September 13th, 2005.


Mahata, Kallol Silas. HEROS: A Patient-Centered Goal-Directed Electronic Medical Record System for the Homeless. The University of Texas at Arlington. May 2007.


Holtz, Naiomi. Health Literacy is Important Health Issue that All People Need to Know More About. Sioux City. September 20th, 2007.


Holder, Diane. Lacking the Skills to Stay Healthy. Pittsburgh Post Gazette. October 17th, 2007.


Liedtky, Michael. Google to Store Medical Records. The Tampa Tribune. February 22nd, 2008.


McCormick, Don. Ask for Health Information You Can Understand. The Des Moines Register. May 14th, 2009.


For the Record: Keeping Medical History in Order a Full-Time Job. Chicago Tribune. May 31, 2009. 


Graham, Judith. Getting Medical Records Tedious but WorthwhileThe Baltimore Sun. September 28th, 2009. 

Franklin, Cory. Blundering Past HIPAA. Chicago Tribune. January 24th, 2010. 


Saria, Suchi. The Digital Patient: Machine Learning Techniques for Analyzing Electronic Health Record Data. Stanford University. August 2011.  


How Low Health Literacy Affects Care. Daily Press. November 12th, 2012.


Brooks, Ashley. The History of Medical Informatics in the United States. Rasmussen University. March 23rd, 2013.


Schmidt, Christie. MyChart Puts Health Records at Fingertips. The Journal News. July 9th, 2013.


Cronan, Kate. Understand Medical Terminology. The News Journal. October 15th, 2013.


Vied, Steve. Electronic Record-Keeping Implemented in Medical Field But Still in Early Stages. Messenger-Inquirer. April 6th, 2014.


Shelton, Sara. See If You Pass a Health Literacy Test. Times Record News. October 14th, 2015.


Korpe, Prerana. Health Literacy Key Factor for Better Health, Better Care. The Belleview News-Democrat. August 4th, 2016. 


Cillessen FHJM, de Vries Robbé PF, Biermans MCJ. A Hospital-Wide Transition from Paper to Digital Problem-Oriented Clinical Notes. A Descriptive History and Cross-Sectional Survey of Use, Usability, and Satisfaction. Appl Clin Inform. May 2017;8(2):502-514.


Boodman, Sandra G. Medical Posts a Mixed Bag. Chicago Tribune. April 11th, 2018.


Ford, George C. How to Get Errors in Your Medical Record Fixed. The Gazette. January 26th, 2020.