Keeping Consumers in the Know: Help Us Update the Model Privacy Notice

Thomas A. Mason; Elise Sweeney Anthony; Steven Posnack and Lucia Savage | February 26, 2016

As ever more sophisticated retail health technology – like exercise trackers, wearable health technologies, or mobile applications that help individuals monitor various body measurements – comes into widespread use, it is increasingly important for consumers to be aware of companies’ privacy and security policies, including data sharing practices.

Given this diverse market and the array of innovative options from which consumers can choose, ONC is embarking on an effort to update the Model Privacy Notice (MPN) — a voluntary, openly available resource designed to help developers provide transparent notice to consumers about what happens to their data. The MPN’s approach is to provide a standardized, easy-to-use framework to help developers clearly convey information about privacy and security to their users.

The 2011 version of the MPN was developed in collaboration with the Federal Trade Commission and focused on Personal Health Records (PHRs), which were the emerging technology at the time. We plan to update the MPN to make it applicable to a broad range of consumer health technologies beyond just PHRs – and we need your input to make it the best possible resource for the community.

We’ll be at the 2016 HIMSS Annual Conference to discuss the MPN, patient engagement, and other ONC efforts to support information transparency for consumers. In particular, join us on Wednesday, March 2 from 3-4pm in the Sands Expo Convention Center, Zeno Room 4602. For information on how to submit comments on how we can improve the MPN, follow these instructions [PDF – 440KB].