Guidance for Health-Care Researchers
In 2011, my office published two papers providing guidance to the health research community on steps that can be taken to enhance privacy and to comply with PHIPA.
The first paper, released in June, Dispelling the Myths Surrounding De-identification: Anonymization Remains a Strong Tool for Protecting Privacy, was co-authored with Dr. Khaled El Emam, who serves as the Canada Research Chair in Electronic Health Information at the University of Ottawa, and the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute. This paper dispels a number of myths about de-identification of health information and supports the practice of de-identification as one of the most important steps to protect privacy when using PHI for purposes that extend beyond the delivery of health care, such as research.
The second paper, released in September, Safeguarding Personal Health Information When Using Mobile Devices for Research Purposes, was issued to assist health information custodians, researchers and research ethics boards in understanding and fulfilling their obligations with respect to safeguarding PHI that is collected, used and disclosed for research purposes.