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Study: Dearth of Laws May Delay Mobile Health Apps

HEALTHCARE PRIVACY—AFRICA

August 20, 2013

A recent report by TrustLaw Connect, a pro bono legal initiative of the Thomson Reuters Foundation, has shown that most African countries have not implemented laws to protect patient data, delaying efforts to launch mobile healthcare (mHealth) applications, reports SciDev.Net. "The primary risk of not having explicit laws assuring patient confidentiality is that many people may avoid accessing necessary services," says William Philbrick, of the mHealth Alliance, noting this is “particularly true when we are talking about HIV.” Esther Ogara, head of eHealth at Kenya's health ministry, says while it’s important to make laws to safeguard patient data, "countries must continue to deploy mHealth tools to save lives while they formulate laws."
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