SOX vs HIPAA

As the current economic climate demands greater than ever transparency on Wall Street, are companies obligated to reveal health issues which could result in the long term leave or the death of a CEO or a key employee?

In its March 2009 issue, HR Magazine (March, 2009) asks whether serious health issues being faced by CEOs or key employees constitute material information when it comes to the buying and selling of company stock. The magazine recommends that if the health issue does constitute material information, the company should disclose the issue to the general public (sans medical details) or should prohibit insiders from trading in the company’s securities so long as the information is kept private.

What do you think? When a CEO or an employee crucial to the operation and success of a company is forced to take a long term medical leave or is diagnosed with a terminal illness, should the company err on the side of protecting employee privacy or on the side of transparency?

Do CEOs and key employees at publicly traded companies forfeit their right to privacy just like movie and TV stars?

Link – Health Information Privacy

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