Privacy Risks of Interoperable Electronic Health Records: Segmentation of Sensitive Information Will Help
J. L. Med. & Ethics, 48, 4 (2019)
11 Pages Posted: 24 Oct 2019
Date Written: October 15, 2019
The proposed interoperability rules for electronic health records (EHRs) issued on March 4, 2019, by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services address the last major element of the nation’s system of EHRs. The ability of health care providers and other users to supplement, exchange, and access comprehensive EHRs is essential to achieve efficient and high quality medical care. Interoperability, however, also increases the privacy risks of EHRs by enabling the unnecessary disclosure of sensitive health information to individuals and entities without a need to access them. This article reviews some leading proposals to protect health privacy within an interoperable system, highlighting the proposal from the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics to permit patients to segment certain fields of sensitive information from the main body of their EHRs.
Keywords: Electronic health records, HIPAA Privacy Rule, HITECH Act, Interoperability, National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics, Privacy, Sensitive health information
JEL Classification: K31, K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation