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Advocates: OPM Database Could Be Vulnerable

HEALTHCARE PRIVACY—U.S.

December 6, 2010

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) plan to launch a research database of federal employees' medical insurance claims is raising concerns among privacy advocates, employee unions and consumer groups, The Washington Post reports. The OPM has said the claims data will help find ways to lower costs, improve quality and fight fraud, but privacy advocates and other critics are worried about the database becoming a "repository of sensitive information that could be vulnerable to privacy breaches." As Harley Geiger of the Center for Democracy and Technology put it, "We're talking about a government database with health diagnoses, payment information and procedures." (Registration may be required to access this story.)
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