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Annual Report the Surgeon General United States Army Fiscal Year 1960


Until the publication on 15 October 1959 of DOD Directive 6040.2, subject: 'Release of Information From Medical Records,' there was no written policy that would permit the use of Army medical records by qualified individuals for purposes of medical research and study. Any request for use of the records in connection with research projects required cumbersome processing, and worthy applications were frequently denied because of the lack of such policy.


The new Department of Defense directive authorized the Surgeons General of the three military medical services to establish procedures whereby access to medical records may be granted to qualified individuals engaged in medical research and study. The Department of the Army implemented this directive by publishing Changes No. 1 to AR 345-230, Records Administration-Files Utilization Procedures, dated 26 February 1960, which outline the procedures to be followed and the conditions which are to be met before granting access to Army medical records. Adoption of this policy, which is a universally accepted practice in civilian hospitals, will contribute to the general knowledge in medical sciences and will also promote better relations and improved understanding between the Army Medical Service and civilian medicine.