Letter to the Editor of the Villager Newspapers published 7/18/2013
People gladly accepted the inception of ATM machines, designed to improve access to banking services. The technology greatly improved daily business for us all with only a limited amount of danger or fraud involved. Utilized responsibly, there is little risk to users and ATM machines cannot see inside our homes or read our minds.
In contrast, the electronic medical record, a much anticipated tool of the health care system, is reaching disturbing levels of encroachment into the most private aspects of our lives and also will enjoy eternal life in cyberspace. Whether seeking emergency treatment or maintaining a medical condition patients have no insulation from the EMR, the new prying eyes of Government, now in its course of assisting with medical treatment decisions for us all. As it relates to finances, there is no other way a government controlled health care system can work without controlling choices, which equate to costs. These factors are a win-win for the decision-makers, not necessarily the patient.
Since many states, including Connecticut, are adopting regulations laid out in the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), the EMR is already entrenched in our physicians’ offices. Local reports from patients disclose that questions are being asked by nurses and physicians. They range from sexual behavior history to weapon possession and storage. Answers are immediately entered into a patient’s electronic record, which can be shared unilaterally and momentarily. It is clear, by the nature of the questions, that this tool is important to the implementation of certain agendas.
At the moment it is not a requirement to answer these questions for inclusion in a medical record. However, since our majority elects politicians that carry the water of progressive agendas, there is no guarantee that will remain the case. Patients should consider answers (to these inquiries) very carefully, since personal choices can be a powerful means in the hands of someone with power. The sky is the limit these days when considering the scope of interactions between the agents of medical care, social agencies and law enforcement.
The EMR is another unintended consequence of citizen-sanctioned government control, giving the term “Taking care of you” a darker meaning. It will behoove us to remember this whether we are in the doctor’s office or in the voting booth.
Rita Conrad, Pomfret Center
As we are being swamped with evidence of Administration wrongdoing, we should not forget to prioritize the vast amount of information we are getting. It is beyond peradventure of doubt at this time that the IRS, ordered to scrutinize the tea party closely by Democratic leaders, including Senators Schumer and Durbin,and prodded by the President’s demonizing the tea party, conservatives and the Supreme Court decision in Citizens United, engaged in massive abuse of power. It denied and delayed legal tax breaks to those who opposed the Administration, aided those who supported it, released confidential information about opponents to groups who supported the President and repeatedly audited supporters of the opposition.
This has to give pause to voters who know that this same corrupt from top to bottom outfit will be the outfit to whom we must give our medical insurance information under Obamacare. That fear is completely justified by its conduct now the subject of a class action suit:
The Internal Revenue Service is now facing a class action lawsuit over allegations that it improperly accessed and stole the health records of some 10 million Americans, including medical records of all California state judges.
According to a report by Courthousenews.com, an unnamed HIPAA-covered entity in California is suing the IRS, alleging that some 60 million medical records from 10 million patients were stolen by 15 IRS agents. The personal health information seized on March 11, 2011, included psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual/drug treatment and other medical treatment data. “This is an action involving the corruption and abuse of power by several Internal Revenue Service agents,” the complaint reads. “No search warrant authorized the seizure of these records; no subpoena authorized the seizure of these records; none of the 10,000,000 Americans were under any kind of known criminal or civil investigation and their medical records had no relevance whatsoever to the IRS search. IT personnel at the scene, a HIPPA facility warning on the building and the IT portion of the searched premises, and the company executives each warned the IRS agents of these privileged records,” it continued.