Privacy, confidentiality, and electronic medical records

J Am Med Inform Assoc. Mar-Apr 1996;3(2):139-48. doi: 10.1136/jamia.1996.96236282.


The enhanced availability of health information in an electronic format is strategic for industry-wide efforts to improve the quality and reduce the cost of health care, yet it brings a concomitant concern of greater risk for loss of privacy among health care participants. The authors review the conflicting goals of accessibility and security for electronic medical records and discuss nontechnical and technical aspects that constitute a reasonable security solution. It is argued that with guiding policy and current technology, an electronic medical record may offer better security than a traditional paper record.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Computer Security*
  • Confidentiality*
  • Databases, Factual* / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Databases, Factual* / standards
  • Informed Consent
  • Medical Records* / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Medical Records* / standards