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The Protection of Data Concerning Health in Europe


Trix Mulder

More and more, medical practitioners use modern technologies such as apps and wearables in their treatment plan. The GDPR defines these kinds of data as ‘data concerning health’. However, also the term ‘medical data’ is being used. Furthermore, the Council of Europe uses terms such as ‘personal health data’ and ‘medical welfare data’. Using all these different terms makes it difficult to understand what is protected by these terms and what is not. This article gives an historical overview of the evolution of the protection of data concerning health, which also leads to a discussion on the current broad definition and offers possible solutions for the use of (the term) ‘data concerning health’.
Keywords: Data Concerning Health, GDPR, Data Protection, Council of Europe

Trix Mulder LLM, PhD Candidate at the Security, Technology and e-Privacy research group at the Faculty of Law at the University of Groningen. For correspondence: <>.


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