OpenNotes is an international movement advocating for greater transparency in healthcare. Through research and education, we identify and disseminate best practices for sharing medical information with patients and their care partners.
At OpenNotes, we are motivated by evidence indicating that when health professionals offer patients and families ready access to clinical notes, the quality and safety of care improves.
OpenNotes is establishing a new standard of care that builds trust and spreads the benefits of transparent communication throughout healthcare.
Our team includes clinicians, social scientists, and patient advocates, working together to identify and disseminate best practices for sharing medical information with patients, families and care partners.
Current OpenNotes initiatives include:
OurNotes: Patients and clinicians creating notes together
Working to help patients take a more active role in their own health care.
Always learning more about the effects of open notes on patients and systems.
Collaborating with the best in the country to improve health care.
We’re dedicated to making open notes the new standard of care for all.
- Kaiser Health News: Why you should take a peek at your doctor’s notes on your health (2019)
- The Wall Street Journal: The Delicate Question of Sharing Medical Information With Adult Children (2017)
- U.S. News & World Report: Do You Have Access to Your Doctors’ Notes About You? (2017)
- Kaiser Health News: Patient Safety Advocate Sees ‘Hope And Hype’ In Digital Revolution (2015)
- The Washington Post: How is the doctor-patient relationship changing? It’s going electronic (2015)
- Kaiser Health News: Push On To Make Transparent Medical Records The National Standard Of Care (2015)
- The Boston Globe: It’s best to get a doctor’s note (2015)
- U.S.A Today: Doctors’ note-sharing helps patients fight health issues (2015)
- The Diane Rehm Show: New Efforts to Make Doctors’ Notes Easily Accessible to Patients (2014)
- 2022: Interoperability Hero Award, DirectTrust
- 2020: John Phillips Memorial Award for Outstanding Work in Clinical Medicine, American College of Physicians (awarded to Tom Delbanco, MD)
- 2018: John F. Keane & Family Professorship in Medicine, Harvard Medical School (awarded to Tom Delbanco, MD)
- 2018: “Doc” Tom Ferguson Award, e-Patient Principals, Society of Participatory Medicine (awarded to Liz Salmi)
- 2017: Health Data Liberator Award, Academy Health
- 2017: The Most Creative People in Business, Fast Company (awarded to Tom Delbanco, MD)
- 2014: John Q. Sherman Award for Excellence in Patient Engagement, National Patient Safety Foundation
- 2013: Massachusetts Innovator of the Year, The Boston Globe (awarded to Jan Walker, RN, MBA, and Tom Delbanco, MD)
OpenNotes Leadership Bios
Catherine (Cait) DesRoches, DrPH
Executive Director (@cmd418)
Catherine (Cait) is Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a health policy and data nerd with expertise in emerging trends in health care delivery. A graduate of the University of Massachusetts, School of Public Health, and the Joseph P. Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University where she received her doctoral degree, Cait has also held research and faculty positions at Mathematica Policy Research, Simmons College School of Social Work, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.
Tom Delbanco, MD
Tom Delbanco, MD, is the John F. Keane & Family Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School (HMS) and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC). Educated at Harvard College and the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, Dr Delbanco trained in internal medicine at Bellevue, Harlem, and Presbyterian Hospitals in New York. Following military service, he came to Boston where, until 2002, he was Chief of the Division of General Medicine and Primary Care at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a unit he founded and led for more than 30 years. At the former Beth Israel Hospital, Dr Delbanco created one of the first primary care practice and teaching programs at an academic health center, and in 1979 he developed and led the Harvard Medical School Faculty Development and Fellowship Program that has now prepared more than 300 general internists for academic careers.
Janice Walker, RN, MBA
Jan Walker, RN, MBA, is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and a member of the research faculty in the Division of General Medicine and Primary Care at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. Her primary research interests are in patients’ perspective on care, the use of information technologies to improve their experience, and strategies to reorganize and improve primary care practice.
Communications & Patient Initiatives Director (@TheLizArmy)
Liz Salmi is Communications & Patient Initiatives Director for OpenNotes at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. In this role, Liz aims to better understand the changing nature of patient-clinician communication in an age of increasing health information transparency. She does this by working alongside clinicians, hospitals, health systems, researchers, and most importantly, in partnership with patient advocates. Over the last 15 years Liz has been: a research subject; an advisor in patient stakeholder groups; a leader in “patient engagement” research initiatives; and an innovator, educator and investigator in national educational and research projects. Today her work focuses on involving patients and care partners in the co-design of research and research dissemination.
Quality Talks (NCQA)
“Transparency. It’s logical and it’s ethical… It’s logical because patients need information in order to be engaged in their care. And it’s ethical because information essential to patients must be disclosed and patients must be well informed in order to make decisions.” – Liz Salmi
Salzburg Global Seminar
“I’ve tried all my professional life to break down walls between patients and those who care for them… I think patients can save doctors.” – Tom Delbanco, MD
International Forum on Quality & Safety in Healthcare
“I want you to be excited about what we are doing… This is just opening the door. This is just a foundation. Transparency as a new way of thinking about where we are going.” – Tom Delbanco, MD
The Open Patient (RedHat)
“Patients don’t always have access to the medical information they need to really join the conversation.” – Jan Walker, RN, MBA