When hospitals find themselves in the middle of a breach, they usually prioritize improving their security to prevent further security breach incidents.
In addition to defending themselves against data breaches, health systems also need to find the right balance to adequately protect their patients’ privacy.
Since medical information is stored digitally, patients may not be fully aware how crucial it is to protect their data from being seen by unauthorized persons. Some privacy breaches may be avoidable, and learning from these mistakes is essential for health systems to maintain security of sensitive patient information. Here are three reasons why patient security may be lacking at health organizations.
Privacy Is on the Back Burner
When health IT systems are built, ensuring patient privacy is usually not on the forefront of designers’ and engineers’ minds. These IT experts usually put system functions ahead of privacy, which could result in poor privacy protection down the road. Some developers may also leave out privacy features altogether, which could put patient information at risk for being compromised.
In a recent report, psychiatric facilities in Texas suffered a string of data breaches, but the majority of them were caused by human error, The Republic reported.
Deborah Peel, the Austin founder of watchdog group Patient Privacy Rights, said repeated data breach incidents could lead patients to question whether their information is secure, which could cultivate distrust among patients. “Our patients deserve privacy and expect that their information is kept confidential,” said Christine Mann, spokeswoman for the Texas Department of State Health Services.
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