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Like any business, healthcare providers are increasingly relying on information technology to streamline operations, reduce operating costs, and increase profits. IT projects deliver value by improving efficiency, allowing administrators to access and manage business-critical data that keeps the operation running smoothly. However, healthcare providers also use IT for critical patient care and applications beyond simply improving efficiency. Unlike other businesses, hospitals, clinics, doctor's offices, and pharmacists have to be concerned about patient security and patient data accuracy. Maintaining efficient, accurate computing can literally be a matter of life or death.
HIPAA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, was passed to secure patient records. It applies to health care providers, hospitals, insurance companies, and any organization that has access to protected health information (PHI), especially electronic health records (EHRs). While EHRs have become a real asset for medical practitioners, making it easier to store and share patient data, EHRs also pose a new challenge for IT professionals who have to meet the informational needs of caregivers while still maintaining privacy as outlined under HIPAA. Read More >
Data security is one of the biggest concerns of hospital IT (HIT) managers and CIOs responsible for healthcare providers. The mandatory migration to Electronic Health Records (EHRs) does make it easier to update and share patient records, which has led to an improvement in the quality of care. However, EHRs also present new security challenges as hospitals, pharmacies, doctors’ offices, and insurance companies all strive to make EHRs secure but also shareable. The high-profile data breaches we have seen in recent years continue to uncover the flaws in healthcare data security, and provide lessons for changes in the future. Read More >
The life sciences are extremely dependent on IT technology. Online research, databases and data mining, process management, and collaboration are all key components of medical and biotechnology research and manufacturing. More than many industries, biotechnology benefits from well-architected information technology processes. Read More >
No matter how large or small your medical practice, you have to comply with government regulations. HIPAA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, was passed by Congress almost two decades ago and was designed to protect patient privacy. It has evolved over time, and today’s electronic medical records (EMRs) not only need to be secure, they also have to be made readily accessible to patients who want to review their medical history. The combination of electronic record-keeping and evolving security regulations creates a new challenge for physicians, clinics, and hospitals to stay current and stay compliant. Read More >
Like any other business, healthcare is seeing a technical revolution. New networking technology is changing the way physicians and caregivers practice medicine. These changes are largely for the better, making healthcare more cost-effective and helping practitioners access medical data faster than ever before. Of course, with new technology come new challenges. Developing a secure, reliable IT network for any medical practice can be challenging, unless you understand the IT issues that are unique to medicine and how to address them. Read More >