Receiving Electronic Health Information

Changes Due to the 21st Century Cures Act

Almost all of your Duke Health hospital and clinic notes, lab tests, pathology results, and radiology results are now delivered to your Duke MyChart account as soon as they are available. This change is a result of a new federal law called the 21st Century Cures Act.

What is the 21st Century Cures Act?

The 21st Century Cures Act is a federal law that requires a patient’s electronic health information be released as soon as it is available. This means that delays that were part of the traditional release of your records to Duke MyChart will now be removed.

What changes because of the law?

You'll notice two changes to how you receive test results and notes:

  1. Most clinic notes and lab, pathology, and radiology results will be sent to your MyChart account as soon as they are available. Previously, these items were not available to you for 24 hours or more.
  2. You will be able to see notes from any stay in a Duke Health hospital. Previously, these notes were not sent to your MyChart account.

What do these changes mean for me?

Since you will be able to see your results and notes as soon as they are available, you may often see them in MyChart before your health care team has had a chance to look at them and explain them to you.

For some results, like radiology, pathology, and genetics, you may prefer not to see your results before your care team. If so, let your provider know when they order a test or a procedure. That way, they can request a delay in sending your information to MyChart until you have a chance to talk with your care team.

When will I be able to see my results?

When your results or notes are available, you will get an email letting you know that they can be viewed in MyChart. Some results are ready on the same day you have the test(s). Other results may take a few days or up to a few weeks. Please talk with your provider or care team about when you can expect to see your results.

What if I have questions or concerns about results?

We understand you may or may not feel comfortable looking at your results without your health care provider. If you choose to access your results before talking with your provider, some resources to help you understand medical terms and results are:

If you have concerns that need to be addressed before you are contacted by your care team, send a message to your provider or care team through MyChart. You may also call to schedule a follow-up appointment if you do not already have one.