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Consumer group decries proposed sale of medical records

January 27, 2009 by  

Concerns about privacy and medical records raisedConsumer Watchdog has raised a number of privacy concerns regarding how electronic medical records, when introduced, will be able to be used.

The group has sent a letter to Congress commenting on reported actions by Google to weaken the ban on the sale of these records, among other issues.

Google reportedly hopes to sell patients’ medical information to advertisers on its new health database, the watchdog claims.

According to Congressional Watchdog, Representative Roy Blunt of Missouri has also added an amendment to the House version of the bill that permits pharmacists to sell Americans’ health data without people’s permission.

The group also objects to an amendment allowing firms to sell data for research purposes, which it suggests could lead to pharmaceutical companies and insurers exploiting this information.

"First and foremost, electronic medical records should be designed to benefit patients, not the corporate interests lobbying hard on Capitol Hill to get a piece of the $20 billion in taxpayer subsidies provided for this project," the letter states.

President Obama has pledged to introduce electronic medical records to improve communication within the health system. However, many questions remain about how to best protect patients’ privacy.

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  • s c mailen, jr.

    Common sense dictates that privacy is more important than corporate profits. Unfortunately, government has proven that EVERYTHING and EVERYONE in Washington is FOR SALE. I do not see good things coming from this latest farce.
    When you remember that our government leaders read at about the 3rd grade level, it becomes obvious that we must be defensive 24/7. Please LOOK at your Social Security card. It says it is for TAX purposes ONLY. It is NOT an ID. In practice, every agency at every level expects us to ignore this. Friends, if you think government is your pal, you have a serious problem between your ears. Wake up!

    • Lewis Munn

      Unfortunately too many have been dumbed way down in government schools to realize this. And they will vote government when told they will lose it all if they vote against it. Matters not that the votes are to be secret; most people cannot break conditioning or ask questions!

      Good people are sunk w/o a trace.

  • Guy

    Government exists only to move money from the uninformed into the pockets of insiders. The entire mission is to keep society dependent upon government services and slowly increase that dependency. When more than 50% of the people are dependent upon government services, the demcracy will cease to function. Those who are dependent will always vote for more support thus increasing the drain on the smaller percentage that are the providers.

    • Lewis Munn

      Too true to be funny, but what can be done to help people understand w/o being illegally arrested and used for medical experiments in government jails?


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