RWJF Grant Funds Online Privacy Studies
To help health care providers comply with some Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act mandates, the Massachusetts Health Data Consortium has received a grant from the health philanthropy Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to study privacy protection for online medical records, the Boston Business Journal reports. HIPAA, passed in 1996, aims to make health providers "more efficient" by requiring them to conduct their transactions electronically. MHDC will examine the use of encrypted email as a way to send messages containing personal medical information over the Internet. The group will meet with six technology vendors to develop products that "work with each other" to send encrypted email. The consortium is slated to present its draft of the secure email system by April 2001. MHDC was one of five groups to receive a grant through RWJF's HealthKey program. Other groups receiving grants include Minnesota Health Data Institute, the North Carolina Healthcare Information and Communications Alliance Inc., the Utah Health Information Network and the Washington state-based Community Health Information Technology Alliance (Connolly, Boston Business Journal, 11/13).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.