Do you keep old medical records?

Discussion in 'Community' started by Lyle, Jul 24, 2005.

  1. Lyle macrumors 68000

    Lyle

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama
    #1
    I'm going through some old files and trying to decide what I need to keep and what can be shredded. Do you keep old medical records like doctors' bills, and if so, why? I don't need them for tax purposes because we never meet the minimum amount required for the deduction.

    I don't mind keeping old records if I know what it is that I'm keeping them for (e.g. if I did need them to justify a deduction on my income tax forms). On the other hand, I don't want to hang on to the bill from that time in 2001 when I visited a doc-in-the-box if there is absolutely no scenario in which I'm ever going to need it again.

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts...
     
  2. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    #2
    I tend to save everything. Always find it difficult to discard thing. Happen to have records going back to the first income tax form that I ever filed. As far as tax records they really only need to be saved for seven years. I have all of my military records, that need to be sorted. Have a lot of medical records from the Air Force and the ones since. Just think that will just never know when I might need them.
     
  3. rdowns Suspended

    rdowns

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2003
    #3
    A doctor's bill is not really a medical record, I see no reason to keep it. Having been a victim of identity theft, my shredder is my favorite electronic device next to my Macs. I keep anything I might need should I be audited by the IRS, receipts from large purchases and pretty much shred the rest. Shortly after I cleared up my identity theft problem (man, what a hassle that is), I spent an entire weekend shredding things that I would never need.
     
  4. Lyle thread starter macrumors 68000

    Lyle

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2003
    Location:
    Madison, Alabama
    #4
    wdlove, it sounds like you are a fellow packrat. ;) You summed it up well when you said that you keep certain records because you "never know when you might need them". I'm trying to move past that stage, at least a little, and get rid of things that there's absolutely no need to keep.

    rdowns, I agree with you about the shredder; I got one a few years back when identity theft started becoming more and more prevalent and we use ours regularly now. (Congratulations on getting your problem resolved, by the way.) I had more or less come to the same conclusion as yours about old medical bills but was looking for some reassurance from the MR community that there's no good reason to keep things like that. I do keep documents related to, say, past surgeries or hospitalizations; just not bills or things related to minor illnesses.
     
  5. anonymous161 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2003
    Location:
    Where the wind comes sweeping down the plains
    #5
    Sure, I keep old medical records. I think I have a few of your's in this box over here...
     
  6. eva01 macrumors 601

    eva01

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2005
    Location:
    Gah! Plymouth
    #6
    yep i keep them because they are in the hospitals system and i work for the hospital :p, just a keystroke away
     
  7. emw macrumors G4

    emw

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2004
    #7
    Just yesterday I shredded a ton of old bills. Records I tend to keep, as they can contain important information (especially for the kids), but bills go into the shredder on a pretty regular basis. Same goes for credit card bills, receipts, etc. We actually may pick up a more heavy-duty shredder, since ours is struggling a little bit lately.
     

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