3 tools to protect patient health information
GUEST REVIEW: Are you a physician, clinical researcher, or hospital manager looking for the right tool to protect patient health information?
Every patient has the right to privacy and confidentiality of data. Whether the patient is suffering from an acute or chronic illness, an infectious or terminal illness, healthcare professionals and agencies must protect patient health information (PHI).
This article explains the various tools that healthcare professionals, facilities, and organizations use to protect patient health information.
1. Cybersecurity tools
Cybersecurity tools and procedures, such as penetration testing from CP Cyber and other similar vendors, are also helpful in protecting patient health information.
Penetration testing refers to the use of various methods used by hackers to determine a level of risk. For example, a hacker can use special software to remotely steal a patient’s electronic health record (EHR).
Cybersecurity solutions include web and mobile application penetration testing and cloud service penetration testing. Penetration testing tools are also suitable for detecting vulnerabilities in servers, physical accesses and Wi-Fi networks.
Learn about the following technical capabilities and tools that can accurately detect cybersecurity issues to help protect patient health information:
- DNS poisoning: This involves using altered domain name (DN) records to redirect web traffic to a fake web server or fraudulent site. Cybersecurity vendors use similar tools for DNS poisoning to determine the vulnerability of a healthcare system and protect PHI.
- MitM network sniffing: The man-in-the-middle attack or MitM network sniffing involves an attacker who installs a packet sniffer for the analysis of network traffic. This cybersecurity capability analyzes how an attacker can intercept information and send malicious links to legitimate parties without being detected.
- Others: Address Resolution Protocol (AP Poisoning), Virtual Local Area Network (VLAN) Hopping, and Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) modification are network security tools and features that can also help protect the PHIs.
2. Automation tools
Automating healthcare tasks can help protect patient health information.
Since most healthcare tasks are repetitive, it is possible to automate low value tasks. Additionally, automating high-value tasks, such as retrieving patient information and predicting clinical outcomes, is also recommended using automation tools.
Here are some examples of automation tools that healthcare professionals and organizations can use to protect PHI:
- Clinical Trial Automation Software
Automating Case Report Forms (CRFs) using clinical trial automation software leads to accurate patient responses during clinical trials. Contract research organizations (CROs) can use automation to reduce manual processes and edit and update forms and annotations quickly and securely. Additionally, researchers and clinical investigators can focus more on patients and build more clinical studies.
Physicians use integrated electronic medical records (EMRs) to assess their practice while protecting PHI. EMR platforms serve as digital assistants for doctors, allowing them to create medical notes anywhere and anytime. A standout feature of EMR tools is text-to-speech which transcribes spoken notes to save typing time.
EMR care teams can share notes to make better decisions. Collaboration is easier with colleagues who can share patient data without friction. Additionally, EMR tools improve physician practice and publish research findings to support peers. This tool can help store RPS and securely generate data insights for case analysis to improve the quality of patient care delivery.
3. HIPAA Compliant Cloud Computing
Cloud computing allows easy access to patient history, diagnostic results and other data. Adopting cloud computing technology can improve patient care and reduce medical diagnostic errors. Additionally, cloud computing helps protect PHIs by allowing only authorized users to view, edit, and add details to a clinical record.
However, it is crucial to ensure maximum security and compliance before healthcare organizations can use cloud services to store and process PHI. The same applies when collecting, storing, maintaining and transmitting PHI in mobile and web applications.
HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) is a federal law that publishes standards for security, privacy, and the electronic exchange of health information. A cloud computing platform provider must be HIPAA certified. Otherwise, no health organization will trust the company’s services. HIPAA-compliant cloud services provide healthcare professionals and patients with peace of mind that their medical information is in safe hands.
Companies managing PHI can seek advice from HIPAA consulting firms for recommendations on internal compliance framework, IT and cybersecurity, and vendor management. Learn more about HIPAA consulting at sites like https://techumen.com/hipaa-consulting/.
Many tools, such as cloud computing and penetration testing, are available to protect patient health information. When choosing a provider, it is essential to consider your organization’s tasks, niche and target audience. Whenever possible, adopt state-of-the-art technology to ensure compliance with regulatory agencies regarding the proper storage and handling of PHI.