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Alex Azar, secretary of HHS. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

There's an intense lobbying fight over Health and Human Services' pending health care data-sharing rules, Politico reports.

Between the lines: The fight involves hospitals, digital health firms and patient advocates.

Details: The rules would give patients access to their health information and allow them to share it with third-party apps.

  • Hospitals would have to send notifications when patients are admitted, discharged or transferred, information blocking would be penalized, and researchers and doctors would be allowed to share screenshots of software.

Health software giants like Epic and Cerner say the rules make patients vulnerable to venture capitalists and app developers taking advantage of their data while requiring the companies to give their trade secrets away.

  • But advocates of the policy, including HHS Secretary Alex Azar, say it would empower patients.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Trump grants flurry of last-minute pardons

Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty

President Trump issued 73 pardons and commuted the sentences of 70 individuals early Wednesday, 11 hours from leaving office.

Why it matters: It's a last-minute gift to some of the president's loyalists and an evident use of executive power with only hours left of his presidency. Axios reported in December that Trump planned to grant pardons to "every person who ever talked to me."

Trump revokes ethics order barring former aides from lobbying

Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty

Shortly after pardoning members of Congress and lobbyists convicted on corruption charges, President Trump revoked an executive order barring former officials from lobbying for five years after leaving his administration.

Why it matters: The order, which was signed eight days after he took office, was an attempt to fulfill his campaign promise to "drain the swamp."

  • But with less than 12 hours left in office, Trump has now removed those limitations on his own aides.

Trump pardons former GOP fundraiser Elliott Broidy

President Trump has pardoned Elliott Broidy, a former top Republican fundraiser who pleaded guilty late last year to conspiring to violate foreign lobbying laws as part of a campaign to sway the administration on behalf of Chinese and Malaysian interests.

Why it matters: Broidy was a deputy finance chair for the Republican National Committee early in Trump’s presidency, and attempted to leverage his influence in the Trump administration on behalf of his clients. The president's decision to pardon Broidy represents one last favor for a prominent political ally.