How Patient Data Security Is More Important Than Ever


If you have been paying attention to the news you might have noticed that there have been several hospitals targeted by hackers, and as a result the complete medical histories of thousands of patients have been put up for ransom. Individually, the files of each patient were not targeted, but unscrupulous parties fully understood what could happen if those medical records were compromised. Not being able to go back and make changes that could keep patient medical records from being breached, experts with a masters in health law are now set to change the landscape of patient data and security in healthcare settings.

Keeping Digital Data Safe

Did you know that pretty much all of the equipment that you see in patient recovery rooms is connected to the internet? IV pumps are calibrated, tested and serviced online, with all configuration details being transmitted and stored via the web. This means that attending nurses can care for patients in one central location, but it also leaves patients at risk of outside interference. This is why hospital employees with a masters in health policy are implementing changes that help to bring internet security awareness into the forefront of healthcare policies and procedures. Internet technology experts are now seen as a more critical force in the safety of patient records and treatment.

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Educating Healthcare Workers

As more doctors and nurses become familiar with technologically advanced treatment methods that include the use of computers, tablets, and equipment that connects to the internet, they are also learning that security is also critical. From monitoring hospital staff that come into contact with a patient to restricting access to certain areas, it is just as important for patients to be cared for compassionately as it is for them to feel at ease about the security of their medical records. While healthcare workers have important and often lifesaving jobs to do, they must also know that there is another layer to proper patient treatment.

Making Patients Aware Of Security Measures

For patients who fully understand that their data is being stored digitally, they can feel a bit nervous, as they know that security breaches are possible. This feeling can increase for patients who have had their personal information comprised by credit card companies, banks and even email providers. This is why it is a good idea for health law degree graduates working in hospitals to explain what their facilities are doing to keep similar issues from arising in the future. Whether that means announcing each new internet technology staff appointment or requiring patients to read and sign documents that outline what their rights and responsibilities under HIPAA laws are, patients feel more comfortable when they have a say in the matter.

If you visit a doctor’s office or hospital, you can expect the staff there to keep at least some of your medical data on computers. You can also assume that those same computers connect to the internet, making it possible even if improbable for breaches to occur. This is a reality that people in this technologically advanced age must face if they are to find a workable solution in the future.

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