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

 
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
When it comes to security threat severity, the Heartbleed bug doesn't miss a beat. That's according to Phil Lerner, chief information security officer at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, who, on a scale from 1 to 10, ranks the bug a solid "high priority" at 7.5.
April 14, 2014
News
Some 5,100 Kaiser Permanente patients were sent HIPAA breach notification letters after a KP research computer was found to have been infected with malicious software. Officials say the computer was infected with the malware for more than two and a half years before being discovered Feb. 12.
April 7, 2014
News
For small- to mid-sized healthcare organizations looking for help with HIPAA security risk assessment, you now have a new tool at your fingertips.
March 28, 2014
News
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
Protect
Specialty medicine practices rarely employ a dedicated information technology resource. Durham Nephrology is no exception. The Durham practice navigated the uncharted waters of attesting to <a href="/directory/meaningful-use" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">Meaningful Use</a> under <a href="/directory/health-information-technology-economic-and-clinical-health-hitech-act" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">the HITECH Act</a> of 2009 without the benefit of an IT expert or outside consultant. They implemented an <a href="/directory/electronic-health-record-ehr" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">EHR</a> system in 2003 and believed that an EHR was the only long-term, effective way to organize patient charts and clinical notes. Read this story to find out this resourceful team achieved their goals--and more.
September 4, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/pro100_proehr_durham_nephrology_associates_nephrology_nc_success_story_10_19_11.pdf
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As doctors and hospitals fight for the lives of their patients, they find themselves drowning in a sea of paperwork. Healthcare workers struggle daily to communicate patient information quickly and securely while complying with numerous insurance policies and industry regulations. Now, with demand from the White House to demonstrate "<a href="/directory/meaningful-use" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">meaningful use</a>", the incentive to invest in communications technology has never been greater. This report by Smith Ivanson explores the top communication challenges Healthcare organizations face today, and why many of them are turning to Fax Servers to send, receive, and store <a href="/directory/electronic-health-record-ehr" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">EHRs</a>.
August 29, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/security__compliance_top_drivers_for_fax_server_adoption_in_healthcare.pdf
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As healthcare organizations develop strategies to comply with federal mandates and succeed in the new environment, wireless is one of the emerging technologies that can enable organizations to meet their clinical and business objectives, especially in this era of having to do more with a finite set of resources. This paper, featuring results from a Healthcare IT News online survey from June and July 2012, discusses current usage of wireless data technology in healthcare and identifies areas of demand and the potential benefits of wireless solutions and strategies.
August 29, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/sprint_executive_summary_august_2012.pdf
Protect
Every HIM initiative - especially clinical documentation - relies on a single common thread for success: the availability and integrity of the right data to drive the correct decisions and follow-on actions. Capturing accurate, complete quality clinical documentation is the most critical and fundamental component in providing quality care, and ultimately has the biggest connection to generating revenue. This white paper describes the risks associated with the lack of a core HIT strategy; identifies HIT strategies that can help manage the complex clinical documentation challenges associated with ICD-10, RAC and ACOs; and provides an overview of existing and emerging technologies that have significant impact on addressing these challenges.
August 2, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/white_paper-perfect_storm.pdf
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Structured and unstructured information are valuable assets that allow companies to make informed business decisions. As a common practice, companies have adopted back office systems and CRM as part of their IT infrastructure to address structured information that’s commonly found in databases. While CRM lays the foundation for the IT infrastructure it does not address the unstructured data that can be found between core systems.
June 22, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/whitepaper_champaign2.pdf
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As many IT managers and HIPAA Security Officers have already discovered, HIPAA compliance requirements are daunting. The issues are so complex that some institutions have even taken a “wait and see” approach. But, sooner or later, you’ll be expected to demonstrate that your organization can detect, prevent, and respond to attacks, intrusions, or other system failures. Download this free whitepaper, HIPAA Compliance: Meeting the Security Challenge, to take a closer look at the HIPPA Compliance challenge.
May 22, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/solarwinds_hipaa_compliance_-_meeting_the_security_challenge.pdf
Protect
While the HIPAA Privacy Rule covers protected health information (PHI) in all forms, the HIPAA Security Rule specifically applies only to PHI that is maintained, transformed, or transmitted in electronic form (e-PHI). The Security Rule requires covered entities to meet specific objectives and presents major challenges for virtually every covered entity in the HIPAA environment, no matter how big or small. Covered entities include health plans, health care clearinghouses, and healthcare providers. In addition, business partners and associates who interact with covered entities are forced to deal with the same security issues as covered entities. IT professionals, like you, know the amount of work involved in supporting HIPAA compliance. The members of your IT team have enough on their plates without assuming the role of HIPAA police, but the team can also appreciate that adding technologies for HIPAA Security Rule compliance is an opportunity to make improvements in overall IT security that increases the organization’s bottom line. Read this white paper, including results from the HIMSS 2010 Security Survey, to learn how to fulfill HIPAA Security Rule requirements and improve overall control and performance of your IT infrastructure.
May 16, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/dell_fulfill_hipaa_security.pdf
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As employees bring their mobile devices to the workplace, while it may increase productivity and reduce cost, it also causes security weaknesses. Download this paper to learn more about mobile security device threats and how to establish a mobile security strategy.
May 7, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/ibm_securing_mobile_devices.pdf
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About 39% of medical offices in the U.S. have adopted <a href="/directory/electronic-medical-record-emr" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">EMR</a> technology, according to SK&A. With Medicare and Medicaid incentive payments now available to physician practices and hospitals who make <a href="/directory/meaningful-use" target="_blank" class="directory-item-link">Meaningful Use</a> of such technology, that number is expected to rise over the next several years. But what about the practices who have not yet embarked on the journey toward EMR implementation? What’s holding them back? And where should they turn for help in managing the transition from paper-based records to electronic systems? Download this white paper to learn more about EMR implementation best practices.
April 18, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/ge_executing_best_practices.pdf
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The United States is undergoing a major transformation of its healthcare delivery system, driven by federal health IT investments and healthcare reforms. This content piece features information from a joint presentation at the HIMSS12 Annual Conference & Exhibition in Las Vegas in February, where Eric Dishman, General Manager of Health Strategy and Solutions at Intel Corporation, and Jason Hwang, MD, executive director of healthcare at the Innosight Institute, presented on the power of “disruptive innovation” to meet the challenges of transforming the U.S. health sector. Download this paper to read examples of how disruption health IT innovation is driving new care models across the globe.
March 29, 2012
Resource
sites/default/files/resource-media/pdf/intel_disruptive_innovation.pdf
Protect
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
I get lots of questions about HIPAA security these days; especially as EHR firms, hospitals, payers, and startups alike are being asked about their HIPAA policies. My general recommendation is that you should forget about HIPAA at first.
September 20, 2011
Blog
When Dr. Farzad Mostashari, the national coordinator for health information technology, addresses more than 4,700 healthcare professionals at the Allscripts Client Experience in Nashville on Monday morning, Aug. 29, he’s likely to discuss one of the most exciting developments in healthcare today – and perhaps surprisingly, it won’t be the meaningful use of electronic health records.
August 28, 2011
Blog
I've been thinking about the Strategic Health IT Advance Research Projects (SHARP) Program lately and plan to give an update soon on some of the progress being made.
August 26, 2011
Blog
A little over a month ago, I asked our Healthcare IT News social media followers if they believed a nation-wide transition to EHRs for doctors would lower healthcare costs. From Twitter to Facebook, there was a wide range of opinions.
August 11, 2011
Blog
I read a post earlier today talking about concerns of a healthcare organization that would be sharing its data with its patients. One of the concerns was that sharing the data (with a competitor) would make it easier for the patient to get care elsewhere.
July 26, 2011
Blog
I finally made it to Redwood MedNet Health Information Exchange Conference and share my learnings and thoughts below.
July 19, 2011
Blog
Personal health information and the lack of security surrounding it has caused quite a bit of buzz lately.
July 13, 2011
Blog
Remember in high school how it didn’t take long for a rumor or juicy piece of gossip to run rampant through the halls and spread faster than a wildfire fueled by 80 MPH winds? Well, social media is the new word of mouth.
July 13, 2011
Blog
How comprehensive can the information in an EHR be before patients grow concerned for their privacy? Do doctors using EHRs run the risk of missing the meat on the bones -- the details?
July 8, 2011
Blog
In the first national study to examine care at critical access hospitals (CAHs) in rural areas of the U.S., Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers found that CAHs have fewer clinical capabilities, lower quality of care, and worse patient outcomes compared with other hospitals.
July 8, 2011
Blog