DOH issues reminder: Respect privacy of COVID-19 patients
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Health (DOH) on Saturday issued a reminder on respecting the privacy of patients infected with coronavirus disease after receiving reports that lists with names of COVID-19 patients are being shared on social media.
The Philippine health department said the Law on Reporting of Notifiable Diseases and Health Events mandates health authorities to “access personal information to enable effective response” but also requires to “ensure patient privacy and confidentiality of the personal information entrusted to them.”
DOH said relevant information should only be shared to public health authorities who are knowledgeable of maintaining data privacy.
Sharing vital information of patients is unlawful at the same time may cause stigma on patients, DOH also noted.
“Further, we call on the public to refrain from sharing these lists around social media. This is illegal and perpetuates the stigma around COVID-19. Our kababayans are already going through enough as it is, let us not exacerbate their situations,” read the statement.
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