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Revista médica de Chile

Print version ISSN 0034-9887

Abstract

ECHEVERRIA B, Carlos  and  SOCIEDAD MEDICA DE SANTIAGO. Grupo de estudios de ética clínica et al. Some current threats to confidentiality in medicine. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2015, vol.143, n.3, pp.358-366. ISSN 0034-9887.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0034-98872015000300011.

Social, technical and legal conditions of the current practice of medicine make it necessary to insist on certain actions and circumstances that may jeopardize the confidentiality of information, offered by patients to their health providers. Therefore, some effects of the current Chilean law are analyzed in this respect, regarding access to data from the clinical record of a patient. Also, the risks of putting certain data on social networking sites are analyzed, as well as some of its effects on clinical practice. The reasons because of mandatory reporting of diseases, meaning danger to public health, is allowed, are mentioned. We also discuss the difficulties involved in managing the results of preventative health screenings and its knowledge by third parties, as well as some possible violations of personal privacy, regarding dissemination of some people health information and its further mention or figuration in mass media. We conclude that it is a must for both physicians and other health team members, to safeguard confidentiality of data to which they have had access, as well as the need to know the relevant law, in order to respect human dignity of patients, each one as a person. We address the attention to the possibility that, practicing in a different way, it could endanger the reliability of clinical records, also impairing the quality of people’s health care.

Keywords : Access to Information; Confidentiality; Information Dissemination; Medical Records; Social Networking.

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