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Category: Data & Privacy

View from a computer screen in a hospital setting

Health care has a data disparity problem

December 20, 2018

If you’ve been reading this blog, you know that we’re inspired by the promise of big data to improve human health. Big data and analytics promise to uncover hidden patterns that can improve population health and precision medicine. At the same time, nobody understands data’s challenges better than we do. One such challenge is detailed […]

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iSpecimen strives to protect genomic human specimen data

Patient privacy for specimen donors is paramount

August 23, 2018

We don’t handle DNA profiles, and protected health information is stripped from specimen records up front Although DNA analysis of large populations holds enormous promise for the future of medicine, privacy concerns are growing. Headlines in recent weeks have recounted both the sharing of DNA data collected by 23andMe with a pharma company and the opening of […]

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Medical Record Lock

How iSpecimen Ensures Biospecimen Patient Privacy: A Deeper Dive

August 22, 2017

At iSpecimen, getting researchers the specimens they need from the patients they want is accomplished with the utmost attention to patient privacy and federal regulations. By patient, we mean the people whose biofluids, solid tissue, or viable cells make their way into biomedical research for new diagnostics and therapeutics. Protecting patient privacy requires us to […]

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Department of Health and Human Services of the US logo

Common Rule Update Says No Consent Needed for De-Identified Clinical Discards

January 25, 2017

Last week, as the outgoing Obama administration neared its final hours, they ruled on a pivotal decision affecting biomedical researchers – whether or not the Department of Health & Human Services’ (HHS) ‘Common Rule’, instituted in 1991, would be updated to require patient consent for the use of de-identified clinical discards in research. The decision […]

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Artificial Intelligence

Bringing Precision Medicine to the Masses: IBM’s Watson Crunches Big Data for Big Impact

October 19, 2016

The movement to bring the benefits of precision medicine to the masses gained significant momentum this week, as IBM launched a new project with Quest Diagnostics to help better diagnose and treat cancer patients across the nation. Called IBM Watson for Genomics, the project is a genomic tumor sequencing and diagnostic analysis service, powered by […]

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Computer Network Graphic

The Summer Surge of Data-Sharing Initiatives

June 15, 2016

June has proven to be an exciting month for those invested in the mission to better share healthcare data and information. Two such federal initiatives were announced this month: Vice President Joe Biden’s $70 million cancer database, the Genomic Data Commons and FDA Chief Dr. Robert Califf’s promotion of a scientific co-working space, precisionFDA, as […]

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Big Data Icon

The Future of Genetic Research is Tied to Big Data

May 5, 2015

Big data is critical in the personalization of healthcare, allowing us to find diagnostics and treatments that work specifically for the patient at hand.

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Big Data & Medicine

Government Grants will Help Improve use of Big Data

December 9, 2014

As technology grows more advanced, researchers are increasingly analyzing molecular codes and creating massive amounts of data, leading to an increase in government grants to promote Big Data analysis.

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Doctors Look at Laptop Together

Federal report proposes software architecture promoting interoperability

November 16, 2014

During the past few years, the federal government has been pushing for U.S. practitioners and hospitals to adopt electronic health record (EHR) systems. However, the full potential of EHRs cannot be realized until they are adopted more universally and the systems used by various providers are able to easily communicate with each other.

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Data Protection

Executive provides advice on how institutional staff can better protect data security

October 27, 2014

The ongoing digitization of patients’ medical records is meant to facilitate the administration of care but requires a higher level of data security than paper medical records.

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