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Medicine - Medical Informatics

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Big Brother in the Exam Room

ISBN: 9781592987061
Binding: Paperback
Author: Twila Brase
Trim: 6 x 9 inches
Published: 7/11/2018

There are serious dangers lurking behind the government's $30 billion electronic health record (EHR) experiment. This omnipresent technology turns doctors into data clerks and shifts attention from patients to paperwork-while health plans government agencies and the health data industry profit. Patients who think the HIPAA "privacy" rule protects the confidentiality of their medical information will be shocked to discover it makes their medical records an open book.

Inside this book discover:

  • how Congress forced doctors to install surveillance in the exam room
  • hard facts from over 125 studies and reports about the impact of EHRs on medical care costs patient safety and more
  • how patient treatment decisions are controlled (and tracked) by the EHR
  • what specific steps back to freedom privacy and patient safety are available and why we must act now

Twila Brase RN PHN is president and co-founder of the Citizens' Council for Health Freedom (CCHF). She was voted #75 on Modern Healthcare's2009 list of the "100 Most Powerful People in Healthcare." Her commentaries have appeared in, The Daily Caller, Lifezette, the Pioneer Press, the Star Tribune, The Hill, Townhall, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Times. Her article "Blame Congress for HMOs" is in the Congressional Record of the US House of Representatives.


"Ever wonder why the average doctor spends 31% of an office visit looking at a screen, only 9% looking at you... or how private and secure your medical records are? This book answers these questions, and readers will find the answers more than a little disturbing. The author presents a compelling argument that the electronic health record (EHR) has done more damage to America’s health care system than anything else in a generation. Consider the privacy question. Although federal laws purport to insure privacy, the EHR, allows access for profit-generating activities such as business planning, premium rating, and auditing. It is impossible to read this exposé without feeling shock, anger, and a degree of grief over what has happened to medical care in America." — Judge’s review of “Big Brother in the Exam Room,” which was announced as the WINNER in the Health category for the 2020 Eric Hoffer Book Awards.

"A must-read account of the collapse of health care freedom in the United States. Big Brother in the Exam Room is essential reading for every patient and doctor looking to fight back against the intrusive government health care behemoth."-Dan Bongino New York Times best-selling author of The Fight

"Big Brother in the Exam Room is what happens when the federal government pays for over half of the health care in the US. As the responsible party for the majority of health care the government gets to decide how much they're willing to pay for care where it can be delivered and by whom and the "hoops that must be jumped through" for doctors to participate and to get paid. Every regulation and every federal requirement that gets between patients and their doctors such as electronic medical records brings us one step closer to a single-payer system and one step further away from individual freedom over health care decisions by patients."-Hal Scherz MD founder of Docs 4 Patient Care and secretary of the Docs 4 Patient Care Foundation

"We've grown so accustomed to rapid technological change that we often forget it comes with a cost. In health care that cost could be your privacy your freedom and your health. In Big Brother in the Exam Room Twila Brase offers an eye-popping expos&eacute on how a government mandate for electronic health records-along with a privacy law that leaves Americans more vulnerable than they know-put all three at risk. A must-read for all those who have a stake in true health care reform."-Ed Morrissey senior editor for

"Brase shines a bright light on how government foisted electronic health records (EHRs) onto the health care system to further control the practice of medicine subordinating individualized patient care. Big Brother in the Exam Room is a must-read for anyone who cares about physician autonomy and patient care."-Naomi Lopez Bauman director of health care policy Goldwater Institute

"Big Brother in the Exam Room reads like a real-life version of Nineteen Eighty-Four or Fahrenheit 451. It's a chilling tale of steady encroachments on freedom and privacy tending toward the suppression of the doctor-patient relationship itself. It's a handbook for medical subversives optimistic citizens determined to preserve a genuinely human art of healing in a world overrun with bureaucratic centralizers and idiot systematizers. In these deftly researched pages we glimpse a future in which physicians are mere cogs and patients an afterthought. Happily the story doesn't end there. The deft and fearless Ms. Brase offers a message of hope and an outline of sanity."-Dean Clancy former senior health policy advisor in Congress and the White House

"Twila Brase presents a compelling case that describes not only how electronic health records have been surreptitiously imposed on our health care system and eroded our right to privacy but also how they have caused the opposite of what their proponents claimed. Health care costs are higher than ever while too many patients are receiving less care. I highly recommend Big Brother in the Exam Room to anyone with an interest in reforming our health care system."-Rudy A. Takala associate editor for The Hill

"Twila Brase is not only one of the most informed members of the health care profession she writes the backstory of the transformation of health care (and thus the country) with the skill of an investigative reporter. With clarity and understanding Big Brother in the Exam Room provides essential content to the health care debate."-Nancy Schulze founder Congressional Wives Speakers and board member Physicians for Reform

"What could possibly be dangerous about government-mandated electronic health records? Like most Americans you probably think nothing. But once you've read Twila Brase's exceptionally well-researched and reasoned account of the origins and effects of EHR you'll see that your privacy your money and even your life are endangered by this reckless electronic experiment. Big Brother in the Exam Room must not only be read but studied."-Howard Root retired CEO of Vascular Solutions Inc. and author of Cardiac Arrest

"Twila Brase has been sounding the alarm about the perils of government data dredging at least since the HIPAA "Privacy" Rule was enacted. Big Brother in the Exam Room shows how the EHR while destroying privacy also has the opposite of the promised effects on efficiency reliable record-keeping and clinical errors. EHRs are clearly a danger to your health as well as your doctor's mental health."-Jane Orient MD executive director Association of American Physicians and Surgeon

"Consent is the essence of medical privacy and the doctor-patient relationship back to the Hippocratic Oath. Unconsented medical experiments inherently violate these relationships and the Nuremberg principles. HIPAA is such an "experiment" among electronic medical records by removing the consenting relationship back to the Oath and imposing "coerced authorization" on patients and the health system. Big Brother in the Exam Room deserves careful consideration for its dissection of the deforming aspects of depriving individuals of their rights to medical privacy and consent. A simple sentence inserted in health legislation "patient consent is required for all use sharing and treatment with medical information " could reverse this tawdry course and help restore health and integrity to medical care in the US. Big Brother in the Exam Room guides the way."-Richard Sobel author of "The HIPAA Paradox: The Privacy Rule That's Not" and Citizenship as Foundation of Rights: Meaning for America

"In my work as legislative director for Ron Paul and as president of his Campaign for Liberty I have benefited from Twila Brase's insights on the threats to privacy posed by the federal government's takeover of health care. I recommend her Big Brother in the Exam Room to anyone wishing to understand how socialized or corporatized medicine threatens our civil as well as our economic liberties." -Norm Singleton former legislative director for Congressman Ron Paul

"Is the requirement for electronic health records intended to improve patient care or to serve insurance companies' interest in payment oversight and "compliance"? In Big Brother in the Exam Room Twila Brase raises important questions that have been largely overlooked in the debates over health care legislation. "-Edward Hasbrouck investigative journalist author and consultant for The Identity Project

"Through meticulous research and the full range of sources Twila Brase has made a very important contribution to the field of health care policy. Doctors patients and all who believe knowing how their private health care information is being collected and used is important need to read Big Brother in the Exam Room."-Eric Novack MD orthopedic surgeon and chairman US Health Freedom Coalition

"Twila Brase's book is a must-read for all Americans-physicians and patients alike. Big Brother in the Exam Room provides a comprehensive historical review and thoughtful evaluation of facts. Twila is a recognized expert on HIPAA and the ensuing multitude of rapid-fire federal laws and regulations crafted in DC to achieve top-down control by government entities and their cronies. She warns America about the inherent dangers of the government takeover of our medical care achieved through the forced and hasty adoption of the untested undebated unconsented electronic health record which resulted in unprecedented losses of money individual liberty and life itself.

"I pray the American people will take note engage and stop this pathological process-particularly members of the medical profession who are begrudgingly adopting EHRs at first through monetary reward and now through monetary penalty and threat of the complete loss of autonomy and the ability to practice medicine in the United States at all."-Kris Held MD co-founder of

"The right to autonomy and privacy which are natural rights acknowledged in the US Constitution and recognized internationally as human rights are being violated in doctors' offices every day in America. Written by health-freedom advocate Twila Brase who tells it like it is Big Brother in the Exam Room is a hard-hitting well-referenced book about how government-operated electronic health records tracking systems are a real threat to liberty and what you can do to protect yourself."-Barbara Loe Fisher co-founder and president National Vaccine Information Center

"Finally a book that takes the approach to health IT that my early medical mentor cardiothoracic surgery pioneer Victor P. Satinsky MD took towards medicine: "Critical thinking always or your patient's dead." The approach to health IT to date has usually been one of industry-led marketing puffery and "ignore-the-downsides full-steam-ahead" hyperenthusiasm. The result has been loss of privacy and security increased (not decreased) risks and costs and loss of physician-patient autonomy to the computer-and the computer's bureaucratic masters. In Big Brother in the Exam Room author Twila Brase "tells it like it is " namely that the dreams of cybernetic medical utopia need to be dampened by the harsh master of medical reality."-Scot Silverstein MD medical informatics specialist and independent EHR forensics expert

"Twila Brase is brilliant in dissecting the quantum growth of data collection and how it can affect the civil rights of all Americans. Big Brother in the Exam Room is vital to anyone who wants to understand the troubling threat to our personal freedoms that has infested our health care industrial complex."-Warren Limmer Minnesota state senator

"Technology makes countless parts of our lives better. So it can and should be with digitized medical records and the aggregation of medical data. In Big Brother in the Exam Room leading medical-privacy advocate Twila Brase shows however that when government rather than individual choice determines what electronic medical records physicians will use and who can access your medical information progress becomes elusive."-Michael F. Cannon Cato Institute

"Twila Brase pulls back the curtain on government-mandated electronic health records exposing the risks they pose to both patients and practitioners. This carefully researched book Big Brother in the Exam Room equips readers to advocate for the safety and health care privacy Americans expect and deserve."-Dr. Linda Solie psychologist and author of Take Charge of Your Emotions

"Big Brother in the Exam Room lays out how politicians and all parts of the "health industry " teamed up to impose a sweeping system of surveillance that puts outsiders in charge of medical decisions endangers patients and is expanding to monitor private lives far from the exam room. Twila Brase's steps back to freedom should be implemented at every level as soon as possible. Read this book and then act as if your life depends on it." -Bob McEwen former member US House of Representatives Ohio

"In Big Brother in the Exam Room Twila Brase exposes the alarming truth about government-mandated electronic health records. Her detailed documentation and refusal to let either political party off the hook demonstrate the integrity of her indictment. Dangers and threats hidden in plain sight are now finally revealed-opening the door to real reform." -David Kupelian best-selling author journalist and managing editor of