Online Security and Privacy Notice
The healthcare industry is constantly evolving. This includes the tools healthcare professionals utilize in order to provide quality patient care. Older individuals may clearly recall when doctors wouldjot down notes on a form inside of a manila folder. That was the patient's medical file. Over the course of the past few years, patients have seen physicians use a computer to update medical files. Most familiar with the industry understand that this is due in large part to the belief that electronic health records (EHR) have many advantages.Furthermore, the majority is aware of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) that stipulates that all healthcare organizations must implement the use of electronic health records by 2015. If this mandate is not satisfied, penalties will ensue. Therefore, healthcare professionals have no choice but to march into the digital world.
This mandate also coincides with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which obligates all healthcare organizations to protect the interests of its patients.
One of the most advantageous features involved with electronic health records is security. While there are skeptics lingering in the industry, reputable electronic health records
specialists understand the importance of confidential medical files.
As with any online digital format, concerns of breach exist. Internet hackers possess a digital power that frightens individuals looking to conceal sensitive data. There have been cases in which medical information has been accessed by unauthorized users. While this does not occur all too frequently, the occurrences are enough to plant some cynicism in the minds of physicians and patients. These are valid concerns.
If confidential records end up in the hands of a person not privy to the information, the consequences can be overwhelming. Breach of medical records could lead to identity theft, which can destroy a person's finances, credit and reputation. Victims could seek litigation against the healthcare practice in which the breach occurred. If the breach affected multiple patients, the practice is headed down a long road of legal tribulations.
Another security concern lies within the conversion from a paper-based filing system to electronic health records. There is a potential for misplacement of data throughout this process. However, professional electronic health record vendors formulate transition strategies in order to essentially eliminate data misplacement.
How to Ensure Security and Privacy
The EHR vendor must work closely with the healthcare provider for a smooth and secure transition. The company should provide some type of comprehensive user guide for the users in the provider's practice.
There are six ways in which electronic health record entities can provide superior security and privacy solutions once the EHR is implemented.
Enhance administrative controls
Update policies and procedures
Guide employees through the stringent privacy and security training process
Run background checks on all employees Monitor physical and system accessCreate physically inaccessible systems to unauthorized individuals
Have exigencies in place for data recovery or restoration
Provide identification and verification requirements to all system users
Access the list of authorized users
Supply passwords and personal identification numbers (PINs)
Provide automatic software shutdown routines.
If you feel that your personal information has been comprimised, please reach out to our compliance officer to give full details of your experience.