Philadelphia ends vaccine registration partnership over possible sales of patient data

The Philadelphia Department of Public Health terminated its partnership with Philly Fighting COVID, the organization overseeing its largest COVID-19 vaccination site, after learning the group had become for-profit and altered its data policy to allow potential sales of users' information, according to local NBC affiliate WCAU

The city announced Jan. 25 that it had learned Philly Fighting COVID updated its data privacy policy, which could allow the organization to sell data through its preregistration site. 

"The City has not been notified of any of these data having been sold. But for PFC to have made these changes without discussion with the City is extremely troubling," a health department spokesperson said, according to the report. "As a result of these concerns, along with PFC's unexpected stoppage of testing operations, the Health Department has decided to stop providing vaccine to PFC." 

The Philadelphia Department of Public Health entered into the partnership with Philly Fighting COVID on Jan. 8 as a way for individuals who wanted the vaccine to start the registration process. The group organized appointments via its online registration portal. 

On Jan. 25, Philly Fighting COVID updated its privacy policy on its website and said that it will not sell data to any parties. The organization did not respond to the network's requests for comment.


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