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The Secret to Health Information Technology’s Success within the Diabetes Patient Population: A Comprehensive Privacy and Security Framework

Congress made an unprecedented investment in health information technology (IT) when it passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in February 2009. Health IT provides enormous opportunities to improve health care quality, reduce costs, and engage patients in their own care. But the potential payoff for use of health IT for diabetes care is magnified given the prevalence, cost, and complexity of the disease. However, without proper privacy and security protections in place, diabetes patient data are at risk of misuse, and patient trust in the system is undermined. We need a comprehensive privacy and security framework that articulates clear parameters for access, use, and disclosure of diabetes patient data for all entities storing and exchanging electronic data.