Sunday, July 17, 2022

Oracle is planning a unified national healthcare database. Goodbye to what little privacy is left?

If you thought you still had some privacy left wrt your medical records, Oracle will oversee the records of 1/4 of the US population.  Until there is another consolidation, when all the medical records of everyone are collected under one roof... apart from patients being treated by independent doctors who have not bought into the system and do not participate with federal insurance programs or use most electronic medical records systems.  The USG will naturally be given access:

Oracle aims to build a unified database for patient information, similar to the unified financial database with credit information, accessible to healthcare providers and public health officials. The database would have anonymized data from hospitals, clinics and providers across the U.S. and provide up-to-the-minute information about patients' personal health as well as public health statistics, such as the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 or available hospital beds in a particular state.

"We're building a system where the health records, all American citizens' health records, not only exist at the hospital level, but they are all in a unified national healthcare database," Mr. Ellison said. "The national database solves the data electronic health record fragmentation problem."

Mr. Ellison said the system will continuously upload records from hospital databases into a national database to arm physicians with the latest information for better care decisions. This idea, however, likely won't be easy to implement. He did not address how the system would gather information from hospitals that aren't on the Cerner system; Epic has nearly 33 percent of the hospital market, and interoperability isn't yet a reality. And as always, the data is only as good as the person entering it, leaving room for human error.

The large database also raises security questions. Throughout the presentation, Mr. Ellison noted patients would still have the "key" to their health records, which are anonymized until patients give providers access...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Even worse, it's not just ex-classmates, ex-girlfriends/boyfriends,
current family, etc. who work in government or at Oracle who will have access to it. Once it leaks, which it will, neighbors and current coworkers will read the records.

This data includes notes from psychiatrists and talk-therapists - can you imagine a nasty fellow employee who wants your job anonymously emailing out something you told a psychologist?