Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Death and privacy (and transplantation and market design)

The latest issue of the AJT Report, a news summary in the American Journal of Transplantation, concerns The Unintended Consequences of Privacy, reporting on a recent decision by the Social Security Administration to decline to share some data about deaths, due to privacy concerns.

Apparently this decision will mean that the Health Resources and Service Administration (HRSA) will no longer be able to disclose to transplant centers the deaths that occur of patients on the waiting list for deceased donor organs, or after transplantation.

This could turn into a big problem, unless it is resolved soon, because information about deaths is critical for managing the transplant system at all levels.

"According to Patricia W. Potrzebowski, PhD, executive director of the National Association of Public Health Statistics and Information Systems (NAPHSIS), “SSA never had the authority
to release state death records through the public DMF. This is because state records are governed by state statutes and regulations. State statutes and regulations vary as to who may access death record information. In some states, death record information is publicly available; in others, even the fact of death is held in strict confidence.”

It is becoming increasingly clear that privacy is a big issue in market design in general. The AJT report coincidentally juxtaposes the two issues by including some Nobel news at the end of the report.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"George Papandreaou in trouble in Greece for Lagarde List Judicial probe"

Kathimerini Greek News, Wednesday Jan 9, 2013

A total of 37 lawmakers on Wednesday signed a proposal submitted to Parliament regarding setting up a parliamentary committee to inquire on the issue of the so-called Lagarde List, a list containing the names of Greeks with deposit accounts at a Geneva branch of HSBC.

Co-signing the proposal were 18 Independent Greeks and 18 Golden Dawn deputies, along with independent MP Nikos Nikolopoulos. The proposal stated that former Finance Minister Giorgos Papaconstantinou, former Finance Minister and current PASOK chief Evangelos Venizelos, as well as former Prime Ministers George Papandreou and Lucas Papademos, should all be included in the probe.

Meanwhile, the three-party coalition government – comprising New Democracy, PASOK and Democratic Left – has suggested that only Papaconstantinou should be investigated, while opposition SYRIZA has submitted its own request for both Papaconstantinou and Venizelos to be investigated by a parliamentary committee.

A Parliamentary vote is expected in the next few days.