WASHINGTON - The Clinton administration plans to send recommendations for medical privacy legislation to Congress next month, where they will join a growing queue of bioethics bills that industry representatives say could have a host of mostly unintended negative consequences for biomedical research.

The privacy recommendations were requested in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (also known as the Kassebaum-Kennedy bill) and were technically due Aug. 22, the first anniversary of President Clinton's signing of the bill. The agency has decided to delay delivering its recommendations until Congress is in session, HHS Deputy Assistant Secretary Victor Zonana told BioCentury. However, HHS Secretary Donna Shalala previewed the ageny's thinking in a speech at the end