December 3, 2011
Internet Databases Checkpoint
One of the concerns of having medical information electronically stored in an Internet database would be individuals’ retrieving a patient’s information without his or her permission. Certain persons may steal, pay, or even resort to blackmail just to access medical information. Another concern is that persons who do not have anything to do with a patient’s certain circumstances can access his or her information, which is a colossal violation of the patient’s privacy. This usually happens when someone illegally discloses a patient’s information by hacking into an Internet database, which can be very humiliating for the patient. Having medical information electronically stored and easily accessible by virtually anyone via Internet databases is an extremely frightening matter and major concern for many.
One of the benefits of having medical information electronically stored in an Internet database is that if something happens to a patient that prevents him or her from communicating with paramedics or medical staff (e.g., patient is unconscious upon pick up from ambulance or upon arrival to hospital) the patient’s information can easily be accessed through the database. This can sequentially save a patient’s life because his or her medical information is readily available in the circumstance that he or she cannot talk. Another benefit is that a patient’s information is easily accessible by medical staff if he or she happens to receive care from a hospital or health care facility where he or she has never established care. This prevents the wrongful prescribing of medication to the patient, which can lead to serious illness or death. Having medical information electronically available through an Internet database enables medical staff of all levels make appropriate decisions concerning a patient’s health.