Wednesday’s Column: Third’s Words
Patients’ information in the US is protected by HIPAA. Specifically, “The Rule requires appropriate safeguards to protect the privacy of personal health information, and sets limits and conditions on the uses and disclosures that may be made of such information without patient authorization. The Rule also gives patients rights over their health information, including rights to examine and obtain a copy of their health records, and to request corrections” (hhs.gov).
We expect and demand that our privacy be protected when it comes to healthcare (and personal information in general). If that trust is breached, we may consider taking legal action against the trust breaker.
When it comes to our marriages, do we extend that same courtesy to our spouses? Or do we vent our frustrations about them to anyone who listens?
When it comes to personal information shared in confidence, do we extend that same courtesy to our Christian family? Or do we share that info with those in our personal circle?
When it comes to sensitive information we may have about someone in the church (or anywhere!), do we treat them with the same level of respect and discretion that we expect from those in the medical field or information technology fields? There are some exceptions to this principle (as common sense dictates), but we sometimes find ourselves sharing or listening to information we have no business sharing or consuming.
In short, if we expect this level of respect and discretion from the professional world, should we not do the same for those in God’s family?
“Whoever goes about slandering reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with a simple babbler” (Prov. 20:19, ESV).