GAO Report: HHS Lacks Plan to Protect Privacy of Electronic Medical Records

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has yet to devise a comprehensive plan to protect the privacy of individuals’ electronic medical records, according to a new report by the Government Accountability Office, posing a serious obstacle to the promotion of health information technology even as Congress has ramped up consideration of the issue.
…A lot more, according to Deborah Peel, founder and chairwoman of the group Patient Privacy Rights. Peel questioned in an interview whether the proposed health IT system was meant to benefit patients or the private sector. “The so-called ‘stakeholders’ that are constantly referred to throughout this report are … totally industry-dominated,” she said. “The people that are conspicuously absent from the table are patients, consumers, and health professionals.”…

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