Dear Mpriestly, your question touches the sensitivity of data. I have been working 40 years as a medical specialist, all over the world, and know from experience that medical charts contain important information. Unfortunately, they usually are far from complete (US EPD’s are incomplete in over 98%), contain a lot of ‘old stuff’ or erroneous diagnoses and nonsense. The copy-paste culture has added to this. So, it is quite understandable that a GP does not want someone to mess up his files.
Medicine is not a digital science, to quote WIlliam Osler ‘Medicine is a science of uncertainty and an art of probability’. Daily, every doctor is insecure about one or more patients he encounters. So, ‘one does not want garbage data in’, knowing the result, right … ‘garbage out’.
For lay people the thinking of doctors is difficult to understand. However, you may understand better just typing in fever and diarrhea and see what pops up in f.e. isabelhealthcare.com. I have written a blog where you can follow the process and see for yourself how hard it is to diagnose properly. (How doctors think. 1) In this ‘simple’ case over 800 possible diagnoses have to be considered, over 30 remain, only one is the true diagnosis. For programmers it is a read worthwhile.
Another issue is the problem of how to codify diagnoses. ICPC for GP’s has 3 codes for ‘hypertension’, ICD10 over 70, Snomed has far more, over 700!, hits on ‘hypertension’. If you view that online yourself, it may us help understand why Medical IT is far more complex then just cross referencing simple db’s, and we have moved, like physics, towards a probabilistic approach. Fill up all gaps in the IT architecture of Medicine will keep us busy for several centuries. Lets start with what is possible with our humble, compared to our brains, computers.
I hope you remain trusting your doctor because you do not have better than that.