Record and Data Retention Schedule
A guidebook on which records should be kept and for how long

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CHA’s Record and Data Retention Schedule provides an overview of practical considerations in determining record retention policies and helps answer the question which records need to be kept and for how long.

The guide can help reduce storage costs and avoid legal pitfalls by making clear when it is safe to dispose of certain records. This comprehensive resource addresses all formats – including paper, electronic, microfiche, and audio/visual recordings – and discusses:

  • Why hospitals and health care providers should have a record retention policy
  • Pertinent factors to consider when determining how long to keep various documents
  • General record retention considerations, with specific state and federal requirements listed
  • Considerations regarding record disposal and/or destruction

Record and Date Retention Schedule is now available as a printed manual, a PDF licensed for individual use, or an individual-PDF/print bundle. Terms apply, see “E-Manual Terms of Use” tab. 

If you are interested in a PDF version of Record and Date Retention Schedule for posting to an Intranet, please contact Bob Mion at or 916-552-7508.


  • Record Retention Considerations
  • Recommended Record Retention Schedule
    • Administrative Records
    • Admitting Records
    • Business and Finance Records
    • Department Records
    • Dietary Department Records
    • Engineering Records
    • Housekeeping/Environmental Services Records
    • Human Resources Records
    • Imaging/Radiology Records
    • Laboratory Records and Specimens
    • Medical Records
    • Medical Staff Records
    • Nuclear Medicine Records
    • Nursing Records
    • Pharmacy Records
    • Public Relations Records
    • Purchasing and Receiving Records
    • Research Records

(9th edition, 2018 — Originally published as the “Records Retention Guide”)

E-Manual Terms of Use

Limited Use License:

In purchasing this electronic publication (Publication), the individual who purchased it (Purchaser) agrees to abide by the terms of this Limited Use License. This Limited Use License: (1) gives Purchaser a non-exclusive, non-assignable, royalty free, perpetual, limited right to use this electronic publication only for his/her personal use; and (2) prohibits Purchaser from posting, reproducing, distributing, disseminating, transmitting, or otherwise allowing anyone else to access or use this Publication. CHA is and will be the sole and exclusive owner of all right, title, and interest, including intellectual property rights, in this Publication and its contents. CHA will strictly enforce the terms of this Limited Use License.

NOTE: Print functionality is disabled in the Individual PDF. If you are interested in posting a PDF to an Intranet please contact Bob Mion at 916-552-7508 or

Purchases that include electronic publications are not refundable.

For questions about the policy, contact Publications.