"Do Not Disclose"

We want to control the privacy of our medical records

We want to control who can see and use their medical records. We believe Congress should pass a law to build an online registry where individuals can express their preferences for sharing their health information or keeping it private. Such a registry, plus safety technologies for online records, will mean Americans can trust electronic health systems.

Privacy has been essential to the ethical practice of medicine since the time of Hippocrates in fifth century B.C. The success of health-care reform and electronic record systems requires the same foundation of informed consent patients have always had with paper records systems. But if we squander billions on a health-care system no one trusts, millions will seek treatment outside the system or not at all. The resulting data, filled with errors and omissions, will be worth less than the paper it isn't written on.