Mining health records

Yet another battle between companies mining personal data and privacy advocates is ongoing. Microsoft is playing the bad in this story where the personal data consist of health records. According to Government Health IT, Microsoft plans to develop “a clinical data warehouse (CDW) that provides predefined queries of interest to clinicians and analysts“. The next step is to apply data mining techniques such as clustering or supervised learning to find unknown trends in data.

The Patient Privacy Rights Foundation warns against the fact that data could be used as “goldmine ripe for exploitation” and rather suggest data to be “only accessed with express consent by the patient“. This is a good advice that will certainly be difficult to guarantee.

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