Healthcare organizations continue to face challenges in de-identifying health data for secondary uses other than direct patient care, such as data analysis, research, safety measurement, public health, payment, and provider certification. Consequently, organizations may be releasing data with serious risks for re-identification, according to a new survey. 

The survey of 271 professionals who handle protected health information, conducted by de-identification technology vendor Privacy Analytics in collaboration with the Electronic Health Information Laboratory, finds that while 62 percent of respondents indicated that their organizations currently release data for secondary purposes, more than two out of three of these organizations lack confidence in their ability to share data safely in order to protect individual privacy. Nonetheless, more than half (56 percent) are planning on increasing the volume of data they share in the next 12 months. 

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