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New Database Prompts Concern

HEALTHCARE PRIVACY—U.S.

October 6, 2010

Government Executive reports on privacy advocates' concerns regarding a new Office of Personnel Management database designed to track federal employee health benefit plans. Advocates fear a new tool aimed at tracking and evaluating the quality and cost of services provided through the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, could put participants' personal information--including Social Security numbers, employment details, medical diagnoses and insurance coverage--at risk, the report states. Deven McGraw, director of the Health Privacy Project at the nonprofit Center for Democracy and Technology, suggested the database is not necessary, cautioning that it presents an opportunity for outside access to sensitive information.
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