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A Voice for Private Physicians Since 1943

Why You Don’t Want a Unique Medical ID

The House of Representatives has hidden inside a trillion dollar “must pass” spending bill, a provision that eliminates the prohibition on the use of federal funding to assign all Americans a unique medical identifier. Former Congressman Ron Paul, M.D., got that prohibition enacted in 1998.

Update: the House passed the 667 page (not including amendments) HR 2740 on June 19 and it will make its way over to the Senate.

The identifier is supposed to improve “efficiency”—of what? Government surveillance of all Americans? The agenda of government-favored special interests, who might want to silence persons with political views they don’t like? Persons who might see you as a threat to their success in business, academia, or other ventures?

What might be in your record? A prescription for Valium or other drug prescribed during a distressing life crisis? This could be a psychiatric “red flag” causing denial of your gun rights. A diagnosis of a sexually transmitted disease? An admission that you had a temper tantrum or used an illegal drug at a party? Could this derail a job application or cause you to lose child custody or foreclose a political career?

Can you be honest with your doctor if anything in the record might someday be used against you?

“Make no mistake. The [patient identifier] would be the end of privacy and the foundation of a national health data system,” warns Twila Brase, president of the Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom and author of Big Brother in the Exam Room.

The damaging information in the record might not even be yours. A hurried data-entry person might have clicked the wrong item on a drop-down menu or even cut-and-pasted something from another patient’s electronic health record.

The prohibition on funding for the unique identifier needs to be restored, states the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS).

Further information:

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