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Sure, We Want to Help, But…

If it's for research, many Americans say they would share the data included in their health records, NPR's Scott Hensley writes.

NPR and Truven Health Analytics interviewed some 3,000 people to determine whether they'd be willing to share their anonymous health data with researchers. Just more than half — 53 percent — said that they would, Hensley reports. However, he notes that that's less than the percentage that said that would do so in a previous poll last summer. At that time, 68 percent of respondents said they'd be willing to share their info for research.

This shift could be, Hensley says, because of the context of the questions — the first time around, participants were also asked about electronic health records — or because of recent data security issues.

Still, those that said they'd share their data were willing to give it to just about anybody, from government, academic, drug company, to consulting firm researchers, Hensley adds.

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