New tool makes it possible to do research on patient records without seeing sensitive information
Researchers have developed a new tool that can collect information from electronic health records without disclosing sensitive patient information. The tool is based on a data protection algorithm which Yigzaw developed and studied for his PhD in 2017.
To test the tool, researchers looked into prescriptions of antibiotics by GPs. The tool and its special algorithm were installed on the servers of three Norwegian GP centres.
During the test, researchers searched for specific diagnoses and prescriptions in the records of 20,245 patients, split between 21 GPs. As the patient data does not need to be moved, researchers can extract even more data than before, without compromising privacy.