Sunday, July 14, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Wednesday, February 12, 2014
How Shifting to Electronic Records Has Endangered Patient Privacy
By NCPA @ 12:38 PM :: 3460 Views :: Health Care

How Shifting to Electronic Records Has Endangered Patient Privacy

NCPA February 12, 2014

Policymakers should adopt privacy measures to protect patients from potential problems with electronic health records, say Christina England and Josh Archambault of the Pioneer Institute.

Electronic Health Records (EHRs) are one of the modern developments in health information technology (HIT), with 72 percent of doctors having some sort of EHR system. In short, EHRs are technological systems that allow providers to store and share medical information with the intended goals of reducing errors, saving money and increasing efficiency. State and federal governments have encouraged the use of EHRs, with Massachusetts being the most prominent promoter.

However, this increase in the use of electronic records has not come with much of a corresponding discussion of privacy and security issues, despite potential problems.

  • An April 2013 report from a group of senators cited the Inspector General of Health and Human Services' concern that both the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services security policies were "lax and may jeopardize sensitive patient data."
  • Not only do EHRs contain private medical data, but they provide a substantial amount of personal information that could be used by identity thieves, including financial information. In 2009, one out of every six data breaches was targeted at the health care industry.
  • Medical identity theft is also used to file false medical claims with another person's insurance, which leads to serious problems for the actual beneficiary in obtaining prescriptions and care. Moreover, beneficiaries have been incorrectly labeled as having diabetes, for example, when diabetics have stolen their medical identity and obtained services for such a condition.
  • Selling a credit card on the black market that includes a health care identity profile increases the value of the card up to 20 times more.
  • Evidence has emerged that "de-identification" mechanisms -- processes that are intended to secure medical data and keep it anonymous -- are not at all sufficient, allowing people to identify supposedly anonymous medical records with ease.

Using electronic networks is always going to carry a security risk, and steps must be taken to deal with the problem. The number of individuals with access to these records should be limited, and patients, not governments, should have more control over who can access their personal data. As technology advances, privacy and security concerns must be continually readdressed.

Source: Christina England and Josh Archambault, "How the Shift from Paper to Electronic Health Records Has Endangered Patient Privacy and Security and How to Calm the Flame," Pioneer Institute, January 2014

Links

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote

2aHawaii

Aloha Pregnancy Care Center

AntiPlanner

Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii

FIRE

Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute

Habele.org

Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together

HiFiCo

Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii

MentalIllnessPolicy.org

Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii

Natatorium.org

National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii

Obookiah

OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii

RailRipoff.com

Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii

SenatorFong.com

Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns

Waagey.org

West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii