Healthcare Data Security is Vital to Protect Patient Data
Recently, Healthcare Analytics News posted an article written by Mark Beckmeyer, Binary Fountain’s Director of IT Security, that opens with two sobering statistics: In the past three years, healthcare entities have sustained 955 data breaches. All told, these incidents have resulted in the exposure or theft of a staggering number of medical records: more than 135 million in all.
The damage from the exposure of so much patient data – both personal health information (PHI) and personally identifiable information (PII) – is nearly impossible to calculate. But looking at the effect on individuals and their worries over patient data security, it’s clear that healthcare data should be a security priority and a reputation management priority as well.
Patient Data security – goes beyond HIPAA
Most people who work in marketing and reputation management are familiar with HIPAA. And many have helped frontline staffers with guidelines that help to keep PHI out of reviews, testimonials and any online interactions between providers, staff and patients. Fewer of us, however, are familiar with the more robust security frameworks in the data protection arsenal.
HITRUST, TSC, SOC 2 – Oh My!
Mark describes current frameworks for establishing and maintaining stringent patient data security standards, and lays out three steps to assessing need, defining necessary steps and evaluating security readiness.
Support patient data security
Reputation managers recognize that well implemented and maintained security is an investment worth making. Beyond protecting PHI, a good reputation for security can offer a competitive advantage for attracting new patients. With so many people affected by recent breaches, we can expect that nearly every patient, old, new and prospective, is aware of security as a risk factor in healthcare, and that everyone probably knows someone who has been affected. Reputation managers may not need to be security experts, but it’s useful to be familiar with the latest developments, to help keep your organization and its patient data safe and secure.
As Mark Beckmeyer writes, “Data security needs to be taken seriously and should be a high priority for healthcare organizations.”
You can read Mark Beckmeyer’s HCA article here. For more on patient data security, have a look at Mark’s Binary Fountain blog posts, Healthcare Security – Corporate Culture and IT Security and Cybercriminals, Ransomware, PHI Exposure, Hack Attacks and Other Things That Keep Healthcare IT Security Executives up at Night.
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