GOVERNOR VENTURA'S "NO VETO" OF HEALTH DATA RULE PLACES PRESSURE ON MINNESOTA LEGISLATURE

A 1993 health care cost containment and redesign law allowed the state health department to write the rule. The law specifically states that patient consent is not necessary for data disclosure and collection. After working for nearly 10 years to devise a uniform data collection system, the department released a proposed rule in August 2002 to implement the law. The rule required most insurers and hospitals to collect detailed patient information starting January 2003 with the first annual transmission to the Minnesota Department of Health by July 2004. An email campaign by CCHC forced the department to hold a hearing on the rule on October 4, 2002. On December 2, the administrative law judge ruled in support of the department. Governor Ventura had until December 26 to veto the rule. Since he did not veto the rule, it can be implemented as early as January 6, 2003.

JUDGE'S RULING: MINNESOTA CITIZENS HAVE NO RIGHT TO MEDICAL PRIVACY

"We're disappointed that the ruling did not acknowledge the right of citizens to control their own personal health information," said Twila Brase, president of Citizens' Council on Health Care (CCHC), which forced the department to hold a hearing on the proposed rule.

PROPOSED FEDERAL GUIDANCE THREATENS PATIENT ACCESS TO MEDICATION

Federal officials have published a proposal to place the pharmaceutical industry under ongoing federal scrutiny. December 2, 2002 is the last day for the public to comment on the proposal.

CCHC REPORT PROFILES THE PUBLIC'S RESPONSE TO MINNESOTA'S PLAN TO COLLECT PRIVATE MEDICAL RECORD INFORMATION

Although Congress has just passed the Homeland Security Act to expand government surveillance powers across America, the people of Minnesota have spoken up in opposition to health surveillance.

OREGON WAS RIGHT TO REJECT UNIVERSAL COVERAGE

Oregonians made the right choice by rejecting a single-payer system. The approval of a government health care system FOR all citizens would have signaled the beginning of health care rationing TO all citizens," said Twila Brase, president of Citizens' Council on Health Care, a Minnesota-based health care policy organization.

CCHC'S EFFORT FORCES MINNESOTA'S HEALTH DEPARTMENT TO HOLD A HEARING ON PROPOSED HEALTH DATA COLLECTION RULE

The proposed rule, "Proposed Permanent Rules Relating to Administrative Billing Data, Minnesota Rules, Chapter 4653," would require Minnesota hospitals, insurers, and health plans to electronically transmit the private individually-identifiable health data of most Minnesota residents to the health department

To Keep Minnesota State Government Out of Your Medical Records, Email or Write a Letter Today!

REGARDING: The Minnesota Department of Health's plan (proposed rule) to collect, store and use individually-identifiable medical record data without patient consent: Proposed Permanent Rules Relating to Administrative Billing Data, Minnesota Rules, Chapter 4653.

MINNESOTA HEALTH DEPARTMENT WANTS DATE OF BABY'S CONCEPTION: Health Officials Set to Collect Detailed Patient Data without Patient Consent

State health officials will have access to confidential medical information. They will know who goes to the doctor, what for, who treats them, with what, and for how long. The department will be able to profile patients and practitioners. The Department has gone so far as to require insurers to provide them with the date a pregnancy begins," says Twila Brase, president of Citizens' Council on Health Care, a Minnesota health care policy organization.

Balanced Against Other Interests, Patient Privacy Lost Out in Bush Administration's Modification of Federal Medical Privacy Rule

The Bush Administration's modification of the final federal medical privacy did not focus on the privacy needs of patients. It focused on the health care industry's desire for date, says one health care policy organization.

Would a Medicare Drug Plan Follow Oregon's New Drug Rationing Process?

If Congress passes a Medicare drug benefit next year, the Oregon Health Plan has provided federal officials with a process to limit medication choices. This should worry current and future Medicare recipients, says Citizens' Council on Health Care (CCHC), a Minnesota-based health care policy organization.