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Data Security Council of India (DSCI) releases Privacy Guide for Healthcare sector

Data Security Council of India (DSCI) today launched a Privacy Guide for the Healthcare sector, as part of its Sectoral Privacy Project, supported by Omidyar Network India. The initiative aims to bring data privacy best practices to large enterprises, small and medium Enterprises (SMEs), and start-ups, through the creation of sector specific guidance material. Privacy guidebooks for other identified sectors such as Banking and Insurance will be released in the coming months.

The DSCI Sectoral Privacy Guide- Healthcare has been created for the privacy and security professionals that are aligned with health service providers and constantly handle patient centric health information. It outlines the key practical steps that health service providers should take to embed privacy in their organisational practices, keeping the patient at the heart of the compliance process.

The Sectoral Privacy Project Guide was launched at the 13th DSCI Best Practice Meet 2021 by Abhishek Kumar, Director- IT, National Health Authority in the presence of Shilpa Kumar, Partner, Omidyar Network India; Ms. Rama Vedashree, CEO, DSCI; Arvind Sivaramakrishnan, Chief Information Officer, Apollo Hospitals and Kumar KV, Chief Information Officer, Narayana Health Group.

Abhishek Kumar, Director- IT, National Health Authority, said, “Post the pandemic, Digital health has become quite relevant as most people prefer availing healthcare services remotely. But enabling digital services isn’t straightforward and requires various interventions in the digital healthcare system. Towards this, Govt. of India had launched an ambitious project – National Digital Health Mission on 15th August 2020.

There are always concerns related to privacy and security whenever any such technological intervention is done. We are making sure that all aspects of privacy and security are being taken care of, to uphold the privacy of data principals, who are the data owners. Going ahead, there is going to be a major revolution in the healthcare ecosystem and citizens will reap benefits from digital health.”

Rama Vedashree, CEO, DSCI, said, “The healthcare sector has gone through rapid digital transformation over the years and expectations of user privacy are growing. This is further amplified in the context of healthcare platforms that deal with large scale processing of Health data. With the new PDP bill on the horizon, it’s imperative to establish best practices for Privacy. The healthcare guide has been developed for professionals that are tasked with operationalising privacy in their organisations. We welcome support from Omidyar Network India to further this project to enhance the Privacy posture in the country.”

Shilpa Kumar, Partner, Omidyar Network India, said, “Through initiatives like the National Digital Health Mission, India is poised to transform its healthcare sector through data. Research shows that the pace of digitisation increases when there is better data protection. DSCI’s report will help healthcare providers effectively meet emerging privacy regulations, thus contributing to a meaningful life for every Indian.”

DSCI also launched a Privacy App Challenge for students, privacy and security professionals and start-ups to solve Use Cases and creation of privacy solutions in the areas of Privacy Due Diligence (M&A), Age-Appropriate Design, Purpose Limitation, Privacy Safe Productivity Monitoring and Unstructured Data Deletion. The challenge has a combined Prize Money of INR 9,00,000 and ideas can be submitted till 19th October 2021 at https://www.dsci.in/ucch/challenges/index/10

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