Basically medical files are being used to get around any laws preventing centralized data bases with personal information.
While I do not have inside knowledge of what the picture looks like with civilian medical records, I have little personal doubt that it’s become almost the same as military medical records. People would be absolutely livid if they knew what is done, and what is available with military medical records (and that includes all their dependents). When Tommy Thompson became HHS Secretary and began working on HIPAA, my antennae shot straight up. And as it was implemented, I came to know that what activated my antennae had been spot on. There has become no doubt whatsoever that HIPAA was designed exactly for what I suspected – government access to everything about us. Patient privacy? What an absolute sick joke! It was the medical/physiological piece of the government’s all-knowing “pie,” with the other pieces also becoming electronic (phone calls, Skype chats, instant messaging, email, GPS coordinates at all times, etc.).
The TV show “Person of Interest” is not at all science fiction, as videos from the government’s ARGUS camera and its associated software show – they look virtually identical to some of the images shown in “Person of Interest,” complete with colored rectangles around moving objects such as cars, pedestrians, etc. It’s actually quite eerie that those involved with the production of “Person of Interest” actually know so very much about what’s available in reality – yet they billed that as a science fiction story of sorts. I remember when “Hunt for Red October” was released, and an individual with significant rank and high experience in nuclear subs almost went ballistic when he saw what was disclosed in that movie (highly classified things).
You want to have a P.O. Box for privacy? Great! It only keeps the rank amateurs from knowing where you really live. You still have to provide the government, through the Post Office, your physical address in order to have a P.O. box. And if someone asks if they can have something sent to your P.O. box in their name – even innocently as a surprise for their spouse – it MUST say “c/o” (meaning “in care of”) your name below the addressee’s name – or it won’t be delivered (assuming competent postal employees, which is a stretch!). Further, the Post Office electronically records deliveries to P.O. boxes (known fact, not supposition, details upon request). It would only take a little speculative contemplation on that process to start considering just how much they really do know about who’s sending what to whom.
Of course now there are many databases on line that will happily supply your address (and other previous addresses), phone number(s), age, and other data, for free to ANY person that knows the URLs of such databases. Heck, at least one will even automatically pull up the Google Maps Street View photo of your house as part of the search results – all for free, with no sign in (except the user’s ever-present IP address and information about your browser, operating system, and who knows what else).
Maybe I ought not to worry since the gummint already knows whatever they want to know, and I ought to just go satisfy my curiosity about my ancestry by doing the DNA testing. But the fact that the FBI had to go to Ancestry.com for Mr. Usry’s DNA, tells me that they haven’t evolved (yet) to where blood samples from a person’s annual physical are being DNA tested and stored in a database. 74’s supposition will likely become correct, just not yet apparently. So I’m not just handing over more than I absolutely have to. Just my 2¢.