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Help Desk in real life (June 10, 11)

PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2007 3:43 pm
by bugstomper
Usually I catch the reference in the comic to real world news, but this time I thought it was just hyperbole. Then I saw this in Risks Digest, quoted from Dave Farber's IP mailing list:

Subject: New Hampshire federal judge overrules privacy law

1st Amendment protects reselling medical records. [via Dave Farber's IP]

The New Hampshire Legislature recently enacted a law that bars pharmacies, insurance companies, and similar entities from transferring or using both patient-identifiable data and prescriber-identifiable data for certain commercial purposes. The law was enacted to protect patient privacy, prescriber privacy, and to prevent drug industry 'targeting' of doctors who prescribed generics.

It was promptly challenged by 2 data-mining companies who buy up prescription records from pharmacies and resell the info to drug manufacturers, and on April 30th was overturned by US District Court Judge Paul Barbadoro.

Judge Barbadoro ruled that the data-miners had a 1st Amendment right to resell the prescription records and the State of New Hampshire violated that right in passing this law.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... 01701.html
has a "big picture" treatment of the issue which mentions the case.

It also looks like the state plans to appeal:
http://www.citizen.com/apps/pbcs.dll/ar ... -1/CITIZEN

PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2007 6:10 am
by wrightc
It's rarely just hyperbole. :)

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 12:35 pm
by The_Librarian
Help Desk tend to mirror real world events closely.

For example, the Great Blackout was preceded by Help Desk by a few nanoseconds... :lol: :lol:

PostPosted: Fri Jun 22, 2007 7:16 pm
by wrightc
Yeah, that was kind of weird.