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The Tally Ho

Thursday, August 25, 2005

News From Home

The Kaiser Daily RH Report posts today that there's another abortion records request, this time in Central Ohio. From Kaiser: "The health department requested the records of every patient who visited the center in May and June as part of an investigation about an unidentified complaint." According to PPCO's release, the Ohio Department of Health hasn't identified the complaint to the Central Ohio Women's Center, hasn't been willing to accept records scrubbed of identifying info, and declined COWC's offer to call patients to obtain their permission to release medical info. It sounds like a "HIPAA no-no" to me, but the spokesperson for ODH claims their request is "not unusual". To me, it sounds like a fishing expedition--heaven only knows what or who they're looking for. Recent patients, obviously, should be frightened, but clinics and hospitals store patient records for years. If you've ever had a medical problem that you don't want to discuss with your local politician, you should be concerned.

This issue is close to my heart (I lived in Columbus for several years), and I want people in every part of the country to stay aware of it. Live in Ohio? Make some noise. Thanks.

(cross-posted to Caveat Lector)

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