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[ISN] Report: Government key to health ID security
By Alice Lipowicz
Jan 20, 2009
The government must be a leader in identifying and fighting medical
identity theft and should make it a central part of health information
technology initiatives, according to a new report  from the Health
and Human Services Department.
Medical identity theft poses serious dangers to consumers because false
information in a personâs health record could affect treatment,
researchers said. For example, false information could lead to a person
receiving the wrong medicine in an emergency room, resulting in the
patientâs injury or death. Health identity theft could also lead to
financial costs for individuals, payers and providers and the loss of
privacy for individuals.
âGovernment should take the lead to ensure that medical identity theft
is taken into consideration as part of the broader interoperability,
governance, and privacy and security initiatives associated with the
interchange and protection of personal health data,â the report states.
âFeedback from our research and the medical identity Town Hall [meeting]
indicated agreement across the stakeholder community that the prevention
and detection of medical identity theft needs to be built into and
considered as an integral part of health IT activities now and in the
future,â the report continues.
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