From hospital inpatient “wealth screenings” for potential donors, to digital "geofencing" cell phones in emergency rooms, the erosion of patient privacy is real. Guess who's the latest to have access to your intimate data (e.g. pregnancy status, ovulation cycle, blood pressure) without your consent?
Did you know when you're in the hospital, the fundraising staff has access to part of your health record unless you opt-out? Our love affair with Big Data is transforming patient privacy into a relic.
Given that insurers use backdoor access to your data (and the law has been unable to keep up, to prevent it), you may want to pay cash before you purchase your next bag of chips or condoms. And you ought to think twice when completing forms seeking demographic data on your race, or when you make a formal name change.
When lawyers and marketing firms can directly target patients via their mobile phones – while, yes, even in the ER – the time is yesterday to preserve the once-presumed protected health information.
With the proposed consumer privacy initiative in California a reaction to internet data abuse, it's time, long overdue, to discuss the murky territory once-presumed-protected health information has entered.
Why would the media release personal health information based on so-called sources? If without Romney's consent, then this is quite disturbing and unethical.
Scandals, no matter their size or consequence, shouldn't eradicate the basic tenets of doctor-patient privilege.
The U.S. Court of Appeals recently reversed a 2014 district court ruling that affirmed patients had a reasonable expectation of privacy, with respect to their prescription records. It mandated a court order be required before allowing federal agents the ability to obtain such data. The medical consequences are unfavorable.