Thursday, October 04, 2007

Online Health Records

Microsoft has announced that they want to host your medical records. So does Google and other companies. Kaiser Permanente has had ads on the radio around here that you can e-mail your doctor and get test results online. My wife and I shop online as well as use online banking, but this worries me. I wasn't worried about the Kaiser Permanente system when I heard about it, but that may have been that it's just for their hospitals, doctors, etc. The thought of having multiple health care professionals putting all of my information into one central database just makes me worried. Perhaps it's because it's Microsoft. Maybe I'm just paranoid. On the other hand, it'd be nice to have up to date records at any time. Would you trust a company to store you medical history?


Sean said...

When it comes to personal privacy Google and Microsoft aren't the first names I think of. I would be leery of this sort of thing from them as well. I suppose if a company came up with a good way of securing the data I would be less worried about it. But at this point in time I don't think that online medical records are such a good thing.

shadwomom1 said...

Your medical history can be used against you in too many ways. I don't want anyone to have access to mine unless it is absolutely necessary.
You can always join Medic Alert and they have basic info (meds and allergies) and a hotline to your physician.

Nomad said...

Fully online medical records are inevitable, but something to be resisted. Not for the good uses - I like the idea of any emergency room being able to know about my allergies if I am found unconscious by a Good Samaritan. But because there are SO MANY evil uses. To wit: Prospective employers using it to disqualify, Insurance companies using it to cancel you without explanation, Landlords refusing to rent to you, etc.

And the problem is, once the info is online, it WILL be misused. They say "information wants to be free" and what they mean is any system can be hacked, and your most intimate details displayed for all the world to see. Even cases of thefts which were caught quickly were posted to BitTorrent and other communities where personal info can be found today, despite the best efforts of the FBI.