I'm researching on health startups. I am based in the Philippines and it's a country where healthcare needs a lot of improvement. I think one of the ways IT can help is by providing doctors with better access to patient information. So I'd like to ask how does a company like Practice Fusion go through the legal ramifications of doctor-patient confidentiality and the fact that a 3rd party other than them sees/owns the patient's data.
One way to cover yourself is to have anyone in contact with the data, get some HIPAA training. Lack of awareness of the laws will not hold up in court.
You can start here: Health Information Technology to see what you need to do to be compliant.
I've worked in healthcare IT and to be honest, there are lots of checks and guidelines, but the reality is when a problem occurs with the software and a developer/support person has to look at the data there is nothing you can do.
We had strict rules about not discussing information, but we had full access to the data. It was mainly built on trust.
In the beginning it often amazed me that we had access to this sensitive data, but you soon forget about it and treat it like any other data. One way to get around it is for the data to be obfuscated, which means that a copy of the data is made avaiable and certain aspects of it are changed i.e. name, address, age...
It is a competitive market, but if you can build an application that focuses on a specific area then you could make a nice business out of it. Diabetes is going to be a big problem in the near future, so this type of software is going to be in demand.
Hope that helps.
I suspect that the legal rules for the Philippines are less strict then the States which is where I'm from and the other answers are about.
My suggestion though is review the features being sold in the states because it is more developed. The business problems have to be very similar and use those feature sets of products as a requirement base. Then seek legal advice and get in touch with a physician.
Try to get someone you have a relationship with in health care. Ask questions with them and get a sense of the problems in the Philippines. It's going to vary from the States what needs to be automated and what isn't such a big problem. As much as I would love our advice to help you we are probably not the right parties to get you off the ground.