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Draft health data management policy released for public feedback

News: The National Health Authority (NHA) has released the Draft Health Data Management Policy of the National Digital Health Mission(NDHM) in the public domain.

Facts:

  • Objective: To provide adequate guidance and set out a framework for the secure processing of personal and sensitive data of individuals who are a part of the national digital health ecosystem.
  • Who will this policy apply to? The policy will apply to the entities involved in the National Digital Health Mission(NDHM) and those who are a part of the National Digital Health Ecosystem(NDHE) such as health care professionals, NHA among others.

Key Highlights of the Policy:

  • Sensitive personal information: The Information that can be collected from citizens includes sexual orientation, sex life, mental health, caste or religious data as well as genetic data.It also includes financial information such as bank account details among others.
  • Consent: Any personal data can be collected only on consent from the individuals and they will be allowed to revoke their consent to restrict any sharing of personal data.
  • Storage of Data: Data collected across the National Digital Health Ecosystem(NDHE) will be stored at the central level, the state or Union Territory level and at the health facility level.
  • Data Management: Any agency or personnel that have access to personal medical data of people enrolling in the NDHM will have to formulate and implement a personal data breach management mechanism and this will be publicly displayed.
  • Breach of Data: Any instance of unauthorised or accidental disclosure or sharing of personal data that compromises its confidentiality and integrity should have to be reported promptly to the NHA and other relevant authorities.The persons responsible for such a breach will be liable to punishment.

Additional Facts:

  • NDHM: It is a voluntary healthcare programme that aims to reduce the gap among stakeholders such as doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers by bringing them together and connecting them in an integrated digital health infrastructure.
    • Components: The mission comprises six key building blocks or digital systems namely HealthID, DigiDoctor, Health Facility Registry, Personal Health Records, e-Pharmacy & telemedicine.
    • Implementation: The National Health Authority(NHA) would design, build, roll-out and implement the mission.
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