Private medical information is probably too easily disclosed to law enforcement.
If investigators are trying to learn information about the patient, disclosure
of that information should occur only consistent with the
protections of the
Often, investigators access patient information in the course of pursuing health
care fraud by providers or health systems. This gives investigators broad access
to private information that they should not have, and it puts them in a position
to convert their investigations of health care providers into fishing expeditions
Availability of medical information to law enforcement has been recognized as a
detriment to treatment in the case of substance abuse,
and Congress has passed a law to prevent
disclosure of substance abuse treatment information.