Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy

Drug War Dragnets and Trans Health: Patient Privacy in the Age of Prescription Monitoring Programs

This presentation will interrogate the appropriate balance of state surveillance and patient privacy in the design and implementation of Prescription Drug Monitoring Programs, highlighting a legal challenge brought by two transgender men in Oregon and the privacy concerns of LGBTQ patients more generally.

​Featuring Leo Beletsky, Associate Professor of Law and Health Sciences, Northeastern University School of Law


With the stated goal of curbing drug diversion and misuse, prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) enable health care providers, law enforcement, and regulators to access patient medication profiles without their consent or prior authorization. In the context of the opioid crisis, the scope and reach of PDMPs has expanded rapidly. This has occurred largely without adequate attention to ethical and privacy considerations, including the particular concerns of LGBTQ patients. Anchoring the discussion in a legal challenge brought by two transgender men in Oregon, this presentation will interrogate the appropriate balance of state surveillance and patient privacy in the design and implementation of PDMPs.

Lunch will be provided to those who RSVP here before Monday, September 04, 2017.