PATIENTS of a Primary Healthcare medical centre in Winston Hills have been told they have to pay a fee to access their medical records after the practice changed locations.
But despite hundreds of people protesting against the impost, the company says it is well within its rights.
Jocelyn Edmunds and her husband Donald received a letter this week saying their long-time doctor at Winston Hills Family Practice had moved to Wentworthville.
The letter said unless they travelled to see doctors owned by the same company, Primary Healthcare, at Wentworthville or Castle Towers, they would need to pay a fee for their records to be transferred elsewhere.
"I don't believe you should have to pay for your own records," she said. "They essentially belong to you.
"I feel sorry for the pensioners who might not have the money to pay the fee."
The fee for patients aged 18 to 65 would be $55 and $27 for children and pensioners.
The medical centre at 187 Caroline Chisholm Drive closed on January 31 because of a dispute between Primary Healthcare and its landlord Dr Michael Ellis.
It is now operating as Chisholm Family Practice.
Federal MP for the area Alex Hawke said the fee was ‘‘not fair’’.
“It is not fair for patients to have their medical records in effect held hostage because of a dispute between Primary Healthcare and the medical professionals at the practice,’’ he said.
A spokeswoman for Primary Healthcare said the fee was well below the cost to the company and the Australian Medical Association guidelines.