, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 284-285
Date: 25 Sep 2013

Ensuring integrity of forensic data in a shared practice environment

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Many forensic pathology practices utilize practice space and data storage facilities and staff that are exclusive to the service. However there are many others that operate in tandem with hospital services particularly in smaller communities that cannot afford to invest in and maintain a free standing service. In this scenario, the autopsies are performed in the same facilities by the same staff and the histology and toxicology services are also often shared. The reports may be transcribed by staff members who also transcribe other hospital reports. Consequently these hybrid systems potentially increase the risk of unauthorized forensic data disclosures with far reaching negative consequences. Although access to hospital records is protected by government privacy laws [1] and hospital policies, the needs of a forensic service are probably more strident. Not only must the data be protected from unauthorized access for privacy reasons, there is also a need to limit data access for legal