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  • A DICOM dataset for evaluation of medical image de-identification (Pseudo-PHI-DICOM-Data)

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Open access or shared research data must comply with (HIPAA) patient privacy regulations. These regulations require the de-identification of datasets before they can be placed in the public domain.  The process of image de-identification is time consuming, requires significant human resources, and is prone to human error.  Automated image de-identification algorithms have been developed but the research community requires some method of evaluation before such tools can be widely accepted.  This evaluation requires a robust dataset that can be used as part of an evaluation process for de-identification algorithms.  

We developed a DICOM dataset that can be used to evaluate the performance of de-identification algorithms. DICOM image information objects were selected from datasets published in TCIA.  Synthetic Protected Health Information (PHI) was generated and inserted into selected DICOM data elements to mimic typical clinical imaging exams.  The evaluation dataset was de-identified by a TCIA curation team using standard TCIA tools and procedures. We are publishing the evaluation dataset (containing synthetic PHI) and de-identified evaluation dataset (result of TCIA curation) in advance of a potential competition, sponsored by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), for de-identification algorithm evaluation, and de-identification of medical image datasets. The evaluation dataset published here is a subset of a larger evaluation dataset that was created under contract for the National Cancer Institute. This subset is being published to allow researchers to test their de-identification algorithms and promote standardized procedures for validating automated de-identification.