September 08, 2020

Building a Pragmatic Framework to Advance Data-Driven Healthcare Research and Innovation

By Alea Garbagnati, Esq. and Lauren Wu, Esq., Roche Molecular Solutions, Pleasanton, CA and Dorien Van Doninck, Legal Counsel, F. Hoffmann La-Roche Ltd, Basel Switzerland


Effective healthcare innovation relies on identifying and utilizing data to generate tangible insights, leading to the development of personalized medicine, services, products, and testing (collectively, “products”). Nevertheless, there is a misconception that such data-driven innovation comes at a cost to the privacy rights of individuals. This notion frequently results in unnecessarily restrictive and inconsistent approaches to privacy and data protection laws, and is rooted in the general (and potentially well-earned)1 mistrust by the public of data use and collection under the guise of scientific research. Healthcare companies,2 which are heavily regulated under various data protection and regulatory frameworks, are frequently adversely impacted by legislative reaction to such data misuse, despite the incongruous potential for serving the public good vis-a-vis innovative healthcare products.

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