Congress should urge the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights to immediately withdraw its new rule regarding so-called “online tracking technologies” and enact full federal preemption to the HIPAA privacy framework, AHA told Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions Committee Ranking Member Bill Cassidy, R-La., responding to his recent request for stakeholder input on health data privacy.    
   
“As a result of the OCR rule, hospitals and health systems can no longer rely on a broad array of third-party technologies — from Google Analytics to YouTube or other video applications — that help them provide their communities with reliable health care information,” AHA wrote. “Not only does this OCR rule violate HIPAA and its implementing regulations, but it inflicts meaningful harm on patients and public health.”    
   
In a separate letter, AHA responded to the senator’s recent request for information on the readiness of legislative and regulatory frameworks to ensure appropriate oversight of artificial intelligence.   
   
“In considering the general regulatory approach to AI, AHA would support a sector specific approach, which has worked well for software applications,” the letter states. “This approach would allow the relevant oversight organizations to tailor the specifics of their regulation to the particular risks associated with the uses of the software. AI is not a monolithic technology, and a one-size-fits-all approach could stifle innovation in patient care and hospital operations and could prove inadequate at addressing the risks to safety and privacy that are unique to health care.”  

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