Byzantine privacy laws 2

This comment by Karl was so good it deserves its own post:

Well, you can’t see your medical file because it contains data of other persons too. There is the name, usally in abbreviated form, of the physician’s assistent who entered data into your file – the physician is not allowed to give away data of his employees. Then there is the name of the physician who made whatever diagnosis that is in your file – he’s probably an employee himself so you can’t have that name. Moreover, the file contains time and place of meetings between you and other persons, namely the physician and his assistants – no business, at least in the EU, is allowed to give you such personal data.

Usually your file contains data of test results which were provided by a third party, say a lab that analysed a sample of your blood. So there is name and adress of that third party, name of a contact person at that third party, and an invoice for the tests they made with your sample. Let’s ignore that the pricing, business address of the lab and the listing of whatever tests they made might be protected know-how and focus simply on the penal low regarding data protection, these additional names are also privacy protected data which the recipient (i.e. your physician) must not disclose.

There is still a legal way for you to get your medical file. You have to need it in a professional capacity, i.e you are a physician yourself, and are willing to sign a non-disclosure agreement. Of course, then you are handling other people’s data in a professional capacity. So that means you have to have a data protection commissioner (no, for legal reasons, that person can’t be yourself). You have to document how you store such data, for how long, and until when, how you ensure that the data is deleted when it is no longer needed, etc…

You didn’t request to see your medical file recently, didn’t you?

No, I did not…

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