Sensitive data such as patient records are securely transferred between a programmer and a data encryption. A database residing on the programmer contains patient information obtained by at least one implantable medical device. A key source provides the programmer with a first key and the remote expert data center with a second key to be used in the encryption/decryption process. An encryption engine residing within the programmer encrypts the sensitive patient information contained within the database, using the first key. The programmer transmits the encrypted patient information to the remote expert data center via a data communications system such as a public network. A decryption engine residing within the remote expert data center decrypts the encrypted sensitive patient information using the second key.


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