Privacy and Security

As more providers are using digital data, privacy and security issues have become a greater concern. Protecting confidential patient information is also a priority for IT vendors, who are interested in offering solutions that come equipped with heightened security features. The industry-wide transition to HIPAA 5010 code set comes with heightened emphasis on privacy of patient data content in provider transactions, since 5010 aims to ensure that only the "minimum necessary" personal health information required for business purposes is included in a transaction.

RELATED STORIES:
Privacy hindering EHR progress, say researchers
HHS proposes new privacy, security rules

 
HIE among U.S. non-federal acute care hospitals has been trending upward since 2008, in fact, and it took some major leaps forward in 2013.
May 6, 2014
News
When even the Department of Homeland Security is warning against using Internet Explorer, it's a safe bet its security flaws are serious. But for many healthcare providers -- notably those still running on Windows XP -- IE's recently-exposed vulnerabilities won't be fixed by Microsoft.
May 1, 2014
News
Can a subcontractor expect to keep the job after accidentally posting protected health information of some 15,000 patients online? A Boston teaching hospital says, "definitely not."
May 1, 2014
News
In the realm of privacy and security, heeding snooping employees and encrypting portable devices isn't enough in healthcare these days. Criminal attacks on hospitals are on a huge upward trend, with a whopping 100 percent increase just from four years ago.
May 1, 2014
News
A rural Colorado hospital has identified a virus present on its computers that collected and encrypted patient data in a hidden file system. As a result, some 5,400 patients are being mailed breach notification letters today.
May 1, 2014
News
Healthcare security is a multifaceted, ever-shifting challenge -- and all it takes is one missed cue for a costly breach to ensue, says Heather Roszkowski, chief information security officer of Fletcher Allen Healthcare. Technology can give a broader view of where data is, and who's doing what with it.
April 29, 2014
News
The Boston Children's Hospital has found itself the target of multiple cyberattacks throughout the past week, reportedly with the renowned hacker group Anonymous at the center of it.
April 25, 2014
News
Serving notice that "covered entities and business associates must understand that mobile device security is their obligation," the HHS Office for Civil Rights has settled with two organizations for a combined $1,975,220 penalty after their unencrypted computers were stolen.
April 23, 2014
News
Healthcare has a few things to do differently in the privacy and security arena -- one of them being: Start taking it seriously. This according to Verizon's annual breach report.
April 22, 2014
News
UPMC officials say the number of employees affected by a data breach at the renowned medical center is much higher than originally reported -- rising from 322 employees first disclosed on March 6, now up to 27,000 out of a total of 62,000 employees.
April 21, 2014
News
The most basic security truth in 2014 is that encryption done properly -- a high enough level of encryption, proper safeguarding of the encryption key -- is the best thing an IT department can do. Sill, many industries resist encryption, and healthcare is arguably the most strident.
April 17, 2014
News
Security is a nightmare for all companies, but the very nature of healthcare makes it far worse. Are there ways to make security not merely viable, but even profitable?
April 16, 2014
News
The wealth of electronic data generated by the U.S. healthcare system presents a paradox for healthcare providers. Cloud services offers healthcare an attractive solution, helping hospitals scale with ease, better manage resources, and provide fluid access and sharing of medical images across organizations, departments and providers – achieving a connectedness that supports healthcare organizations’ patient care goals. Learn why cloud services may be the solution to your healthcare organization’s medical imaging challenges.
November 7, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/medical_imaging_in_the_cloud_final.pdf
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Meaningful Use Stage 2: A handbook for providers discusses the changes in Stage 2 following the release of the final rules. This report focuses on what providers should expect, technology challenges and business opportunities in Stage 2 criteria, and key enterprise strategies for Stage 2 initiatives.
October 29, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/ebook_mustage2_handbook.pdf
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In healthcare, IT systems management is not simply a matter of process efficiency and cost savings—it could be a matter of life or death for patients. Faced with regulatory requirements, widely dispersed facilities, demands for <a href="/directory/electronic-health-record-ehr" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">electronic health records</a> (EHRs), and increasingly more and more mobile devices for providers, healthcare IT managers are forced to streamline systems management as budgets and headcount shrink.
October 25, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/dell_systems_management_in_healthcare.pdf
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The arrival of <a href="/directory/health-information-technology-economic-and-clinical-health-hitech-act" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">HITECH</a> and other laws designed to enforce HIPAA privacy guidelines makes maintaining HIPAA compliance more important than ever. Faxing anything, in a traditional manner, while maintaining compliance is extremely difficult. Therefore, we need to change the way we process and handle patient healthcare information. Fortunately, the advent of intelligent fax boards has paved the way for healthcare entities to transition into the future while allowing for more economical use of resources and reducing environmental impact.
October 18, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/hipaa_fax_white_paper_v0.8.pdf
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Electronic locks and latches provide enhanced security where healthcare facilities need it the most – on the carts and cabinets that house valuable medical supplies and patient information. Electronic locks provide secure locking and audit trail capabilities that can help healthcare IT managers comply with industry regulations such as HIPAA and <a href="/directory/health-information-technology-economic-and-clinical-health-hitech-act" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">HITECH</a>. This white paper explores opportunities for improved physical security in the healthcare environment and reviews electronic access solutions available to equipment manufacturers.
October 16, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/southco_wp_medsecurity.pdf
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Memorial Hermann needed a more efficient way to process 32,000 user access requests per year to key healthcare and enterprise applications, and better controls around access provided to 20,000 employees including caregivers, employees and temporary workers spread throughout greater Houston, while demonstrating regulatory compliance — primarily with HIPAA and <a href="/directory/health-information-technology-economic-and-clinical-health-hitech-act" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">HITECH</a>. With the Courion identity and access management suite, Memorial Hermann is now able to perform timely user attestations, streamline compliance, increase operational efficiency and strengthen security.
October 8, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/casestudy_mhhs_courion.pdf
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HealthSpring is one of the country’s largest and fastest growing providers of <a href="/directory/medicare" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">Medicare</a> Advantage health care plans with more than one million members in 11 states and the District of Columbia. To improve the accuracy, speed and scalability of its compliance program, HealthSpring chose Courion. The Courion suite is integrated with all of HealthSpring’s critical information technology systems, including its PeopleSoft <a href="/directory/enterprise-resource-planning" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">enterprise resource planning</a> (ERP), claims processing and membership management systems.
October 8, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/casestudy_healthspring_courion.pdf
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With sensitive data being continually accessed across the enterprise, the web, and mobile devices, organizations are constantly facing the challenge of protecting their critical assets such as employee and patient data – all of which impact their reputations and their bottom lines. Healthcare organizations in particular need to ensure only the right people have the right access to the right information at the right time. That’s the objective of an access risk management strategy.
October 8, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/white_paper_access_risk_management_courion.pdf
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Hospitals and medical offices are busy places. Ever wonder how easy it would be for someone to walk out with an office laptop or mobile device? Not only do patients expect confidentiality of their medical records but government regulations like HIPAA demand it. The theft of laptops, computers and mobile devices is a common cause of data breaches and physical security is a highly effective first line of defense.
October 8, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/kensington_white_paper_080612.pdf
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By taking a comprehensive approach to systems management, healthcare providers’ IT departments can significantly reduce the amount of time required to perform routine maintenance tasks, therefore improving productivity. These time savings allow IT departments to shift staff to more value added activities that help support the business and reachstrategic goals.
September 19, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/realizing_the_return.pdf
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This white paper provides a brief overview of HIPAA regulations and how healthcare organizations are using technology to assist with compliance. Many traditional document handling processes do not comply with HIPAA regulations for privacy and security. The whitepaper discusses network faxing, explores advantages for implementing a network fax solution to support HIPAA compliance initiatives and to improve the security and overall efficiency of the document transmission processes.
September 11, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/hipaa_healthcare_transformation_to_electronic_communications.pdf
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As more and more hospitals work to incorporate smartphones into their communication network, they have learned important lessons that can help other facilities make a smooth transition. At the end of the day, the goal is to get the right message, to the right person, on the right device, at the right time.
September 4, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/wp-us-6-lessons-hospital-smartphone-integration.pdf
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While many industries are reliant on information technology to deliver services and drive innovation, none is so deeply entwined in IT than healthcare. As such, it should be no surprise that the potential impact of cloud computing is being felt, with mixed feelings, most acutely in this industry.
April 6, 2012
Blog
Like many of you, I made the annual pilgrimage to the HIMSS Conference last month but I didn’t write much publicly about it. Here’s what I learned while I was in Vegas and my takeaways for the rest of the year.
March 27, 2012
Blog
When will our employees learn not to identify patients on Facebook or any other social media site?
January 5, 2012
Blog
Can you hear that clock ticking down to Jan. 1, 2012? If you are among the few in healthcare who are really on the ball, becoming compliant with new ASC-X12 5010 transaction standards ahead of the deadline, then congratulations!
December 13, 2011
Blog
This past week I had the pleasure of traveling, along with MedTech Media Editorial Director Rich Pizzi, to Amelia Island, Fla. for the inaugural HIMSS Leaders & Innovators conference.
November 22, 2011
Blog
I was interviewed for an article on AIS Health that came out last week. The title of this article -- on health care social media and regulatory and legal issues that health care providers may face in using these tools -- struck me as being tinged with hysteria.
November 17, 2011
Blog
The healthcare industry is under constant pressure to streamline the sharing and availability of information, while at the same time maintaining ever-more rigorous controls over patient privacy, and of course, reducing costs at the same time. Therefore cloud computing offers some significant opportunities, perhaps even more significant than in many other industries.
November 15, 2011
Blog
The HITECH Act called for stepped-up HIPAA privacy and security and breach notification rule enforcement with respect to covered entities and business associates, to be accomplished by spot-check audits.
November 9, 2011
Blog
This weekend, I was busy using online applications. While I love doing things online, I do not love signing on to the various websites. This led me to think about my healthcare clients, the clinicians and physicians who need to sign into multiple systems several times a day to do their jobs.
October 10, 2011
Blog
The 83rd Annual AHIMA Convention & Exhibit took place this week in Salt Lake City, Utah. The official AHIMA Resources twitter account promoted the hashtag #AHIMA11 in the weeks building up to the conference, in hopes that attendees would share personal experiences, tweet live events and enjoy the networking affairs. Here is a twitter recap of those who chose to do so.
October 7, 2011
Blog
At BIDMC, I oversee 10,600 desktops and 2000 laptops. They are all locked down with System Center Configuration Manager 2007 and McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator.
October 4, 2011
Blog
HHS announced the publication of a new proposed rule titled: CLIA Program and HIPAA Privacy Rule; Patients’ Access to Test Reports.
September 30, 2011
Blog