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Robert Wood Johnson Project Deems PHR Privacy Inadequate

June 18, 2009
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Project HealthDesign, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (Princeton, N.J.) funded project to develop PHR applications that extend and enhance the range of services offered by existing PHRs, is releasing work products and a final report from the initial phase of project.

Key findings from the report include:

  • Traditional concepts of privacy and confidentiality are in many respects inadequate to capture the way health information can be shared and distributed;
  • Patients themselves have a large and unprecedented role in helping to safeguard their own health information;
  • Society’s response to demands for privacy/confidentiality protection and best practices for information management must take into account the health aspirations and social and economic fears of patients.

The final report includes key learnings from the work of the program’s first nine grantee teams. The project is also releasing open, sharable source code and other technical code documentation produced by the grantee teams in developing PHR application prototypes which is available at

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