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Advocates Oppose Proposed Health ID Function

PRIVACY LAW—AUSTRALIA

August 20, 2010

Privacy advocates are expressing concern over a proposed plan to use the mandatory healthcare identifiers to monitor people on benefits, The Australian reports. Opposition treasury spokesman Joe Hockey is sponsoring the bill, which privacy advocates dislike due to the fact that the health identifiers laws were to prohibit the use of health ID numbers in non health-related instances, the report states. "We repeatedly warned of the risk of function creep in relation to healthcare identifiers," said Australian Privacy Foundation health spokeswoman Juanita Fernando. "The coalition plans to make use of the HI scheme to achieve cost savings in health and welfare despite the risks to citizens' privacy, not to mention the danger of identity fraud."  
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