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Google Health pilot launches with Cleveland Clinic

Google Health login
Google and the Cleveland Clinic hospital in Cleveland, Ohio will begin storing medical records for thousands of patients online today. Patient records at the Cleveland Clinic are already stored electronically, but by participating in a pilot project for Google Health, patients will be able to access their private records from any computer.

Patient data including medical histories, allergies, prescriptions, and diagnoses will be stored online, which leads to at least two questions:
  1. Will people feel that their data is safe simply because they've come up with an unhackable password like "1234?"
  2. Do you really want Google to know your allergies, and do you trust Google not to try to sell you antihistamines with this information?
Of course, when Google rolled out Gmail, there were a lot of people complaining that the service represented a massive invasion of privacy since machines would be reading each email in order to place relevant text-based ads. And now most people don't think twice about that. So we're going to go out on a limb and predict that if Google can demonstrate that its online health records system is actually useful, people might be willing to overlook their privacy concerns.

As for the password protection, there's no way to guarantee that someone won't hack their way into your data. But there are some basic tips you should follow to come up with a secure password. And you should really use a different password for each online account you have so that someone who finds their way into your Flickr account can't access your medical records.

Tags: cleveland-clinic, google-health, medical, medical-records, patients