about this study

We know that up to 80% of medical information discussed verbally in a consultation is subsequently forgotten by patients after their clinic visit.

Providing patients with a recording of key medical information – whether it be a consultation with an oncologist or physiotherapist or nursing education session – has been shown to improve understanding and recall. However, it is important that recordings made by patients:

  • Involve a discussion, and consent from the health professional they are hoping to audio-record
  • Are seen as a small part of a broader relationship with the patient and healthcare provider, and help further trust between both parties, not compromise it
  • Can be shared with family and friends involved in their care
  • Are part of a robust system designed to ensure that audio-files are confidentially saved and stored with the patient’s medical record
  • Are implemented in such a way that they meet healthcare provider medico-legal requirements and concerns

The SecondEars app has been developed to address the above key considerations regarding the implementation of consultation recordings in healthcare settings. Specifically, SecondEars was co-designed with the input from: doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, IT professions, and health information management experts, and allows patients to record, and share consultations while ensuring they are stored with patient's medical records.

We have tested SecondEars at Peter Mac, and investigated the medico-legal considerations raised by health professionals and patients around its safe implementation and use. We are now developing patient- and clinician-friendly resources around lawful consultation recording use, and investigating long-term implementation.


Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre


Peter MacCallum Foundation

Victorian Managed Insurance Authority

Cancer Experiences Research, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre

principal investigator

Ms Amelia Hyatt

project status


publications & presentations

Co-design of the SecondEars app:

Testing and implementation assessment:

Medico-legal analysis:


Want to record your doctor’s appointment? Great idea, but first, check it’s legal

Missed something the doctor said? Recording your appointments gives you a chance to go back

contact details

Ms Amelia Hyatt

Phone: (03) 8559 7837

Email: [email protected]