Oppose REAL ID: A Back Door to the National Patient Identifier

***NEWS RELEASE***

 

For Immediate Release
March 14, 2016

CONTACT:
Deborah Hamilton, Hamilton Strategies, 215.815.7716, 610.584.1096, ext. 102, or Beth Harrison, 610.584.1096, ext. 104, Media@HamiltonStrategies.com 

Oppose REAL ID:

A Back Door to the National Patient Identifier

Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom: National ID Card Opens

the Door to a National Patient ID That Would Compromise

Patient’s Private Medical Information

 

ST. PAUL, Minn.—Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton has pushed for a “no card, no care” National Patient ID. Although the concept didn’t take off as she had hoped, state adoption of a federal REAL ID card could make her plan a reality. Twila Brase, president and co-founder of Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom (CCHF, www.cchfreedom.org), says REAL ID could become a back-door approach to a National Patient ID.

CCHF, a patient-centered national health freedom organization based in St. Paul, Minn., existing to protect health care choices, individualized patient care, and medical and genetic privacy rights, has been educating Americans about the dangers of a National Patient ID, including a report that details how the system would compromise their private medical information.

HIPAA required this Hillary-backed ID, but Congressman Ron Paul prohibited its funding. Then a federal law required “creditors” to ask for IDs, and federal officials tried to designate doctors and hospitals as creditors, but a 2010 law clarified they aren’t, said Brase.  

“Yet some clinics havenʼt gotten the message and still ask for this ID,” Brase said. “Now the Obama administration is pushing REAL ID, a national ID card that could become a National Patient ID. And a former bureaucrat just called for a National Health Safety Identifier, which is just another name for a national patient ID. Whatever they call it, itʼs all the same.

“Furthermore, the federal REAL ID law says that the Homeland Security Secretary can change the purpose of REAL ID at any time without permission from Congress. The Secretary could simply declare the card to be a unique patient identifier for access to medical services.

“Americans have been misled. Homeland Security is issuing threats that people won’t be able to fly without a federal REAL ID card,” Brase continued. “But Homeland Security has already told Illinois that’s not true. They’ll still be able to fly, but may require more security screening. Furthermore, some states without REAL ID have Enhanced Drivers’ Licenses and Homeland Security says those also work for flying.” 

The REAL ID was passed by Congress in 2005 after the 9/11 Commission recommended that the federal government “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver’s licenses,” according to the Department of Homeland Security website. “The Act established minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for official purposes licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards. States have made considerable progress in meeting this key recommendation of the 9/11 Commission and every state has a more secure driver’s license today than before the passage of the Act.”

“But the fact is,” says Brase, “The federal government cannot constitutionally commandeer a state to implement and fund a federal law. That fact, the cost of the unfunded mandate to state taxpayers, and the privacy concerns of a national network of databases are why it’s 11 years after REAL ID passed and a majority of states are not yet compliant. They don’t have to.”

Brase also referenced the huge data hacks over the past year that have compromised millions of Americans’ private data.

“Hacks into the private records of millions of Americans is a frightening commentary on how unsecure our data really is,” Brase said. “Imagine if, besides our financial information, social security numbers, family names and addresses, and fingerprints, all our identification information was in a national database network and our private medical data was readily accessible to outsiders with that information. Our medical information must be protected just as well as all of our other data—in fact, even more so. A National Patient ID, which could come as a result of REAL ID, would make our personal and medical data even more unsecure.”

Brase has discussed REAL ID and the National Patient ID on CCHF’s daily, 60-second “Health Freedom Minute.” Heard on 367 stations nationwide, including nearly 200 on the American Family Radio Network and 100 on the Bott Radio Network, “Health Freedom Minute” helps listeners learn more about the agenda behind health care initiatives, as well as steps they can take to protect their health care choices, rights and privacy. The program is free for stations to run; for details, contact Michael Hamilton at mhamilton@hamiltonstrategies.com or (610) 584-1096 or (215) 519-4838.

For more information about CCHF, visit its web site at www.cchfreedom.org, its Facebook page at www.facebook.com/cchfreedom or its Twitter feed, @CCHFreedom.

Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom, a patient-centered national health freedom organization based in St. Paul, Minn., exists to protect health care choices, individualized patient care, and medical and genetic privacy rights. CCHF sponsors the daily, 60-second radio feature, Health Freedom Minute, which airs on approximately 350 stations nationwide, including nearly 200 on the American Family Radio Network and 100 on the Bott Radio Network. Listeners can learn more about the agenda behind health care initiatives and steps they can take to protect their health care choices, rights and privacy. 

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