HIPAA

Big data in healthcare: Transparency is transformative

Big data healthcare

The healthcare industry is experiencing off-the-charts growth in data generation. Growing numbers of clinical solutions generate more data every day--including electronic medical records, communication systems, and digital image archiving. On top of that,  wearable sensor networks compile information on patients' heart rate, brain activity, sleep patterns, temperature, muscle motion, and numerous other clinically useful data points. This enhanced ability to capture data from everywhere generates massive sets of information. This information is invaluable for healthcare and modern clinical practices--as long as we can manage it properly. » Read more

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A few words about Google Health

Google Health was doomed from the start.

It was based on a legal fallacy and a technical one. » Read more

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Liquid data and the health information economy: Is 2011 finally the year?

What a difference three years makes. It seems quaint now that in the 2008 NEJM there were concerns raised about the flow of health information onto the web. Back then there was but a faint trickle of what could be entered, mostly by hand, and accessed on the web. Before HITECH and health care reform, exchanging health data online seemed blasphemous to many hospitals, patients, and physicians alike.

Fast forward to today and where we are now: » Read more

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Will reading your doctor's notes make you healthier?

In an old Seinfeld episode, Elaine visits her doctor  and manages to sneak a peek at the physician’s notes. She sees she’s been labeled "difficult." The doctor grabs the notes from her and after a confrontation, jots down more notes. Later, Elaine convinces Kramer to try to get access to her chart, but he walks out empty-handed only to report, "they’ve now created a chart on me."

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) now allows patients access to their medical records, but few patients—like Elaine--have ever lain eyes on their records. And those who try commonly face bureaucratic obstacles and exorbitant copying fees.

One doctor thought that openly inviting patients to review these records could better engage patients, and increase their understanding of health and treatment regimens. So he decided to find out for sure. » Read more

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