Starting next Monday, October 27, there will be a national dialogue – conducted online – about health information technology and privacy. While the campaign focus on health care has been on how and who should finance it, the transition from paper to electronic health records is a significant issue that does not attract a lot of public attention. This dialogue will focus on privacy – how electronic records can or should be restricted and protected from individuals that have no business reading your health information. The question that will frame the dialogue:
How can we use information technology to improve healthcare, while safeguarding privacy?
Health information technology legislation has been working through Congress, but has stalled, at least in part, due to privacy concerns. Maybe this dialogue can hit on an idea to break through the legislative impass.