The biobanking industry needs to address growing information technology demands in order to be able to execute on best practices for research now and in the future, said Dee McGarvey, Director, CHTN Eastern Division, University of Pennsylvania, in an interview.
Biobank databases, for example, need to be comprehensive enough to hold large amounts of information and at the same time provide flexibility so that they can connect with a variety of complementary information systems. As the systems are designed and implemented, of primary concern is ensuring security since Patient Health Information (PHI) is involved.
“That’s probably one of the biggest issues that biobanks are working with right now,” McGarvey said. "How do you manage to keep the databases open so we can use them and access them and they can interact with all the other systems? How can we work within this framework and at the same time, maintain the security?”