More Protections Urged for Medical Records

    Date11 May 2006
    Posted ByBrittany Day
    WASHINGTON D.C. -- The push for a national network of electronic medical records poses significant privacy risks at the same time that it promises to save lives, said members of a panel here at the Computer, Freedom and Privacy Conference on Wednesday.

    In 2004, the Bush Administration mandated that Americans have electronic health records in 10 years and called for the development of a National Health Information Network. Yet, such a network could pose significant privacy, health and identity fraud risks, said Pam Dixon, a panelist and executive director of the World Privacy Forum. "There are significant issues with who has access to this data," Dixon said. In a report released Wednesday, the World Privacy Forum documented cases of medical identity fraud and found that errors in patient records can result in risk of misdiagnoses and improper billing. Moreover, such errors can be almost impossible to correct, Dixon said.

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