Do you know that 36 percent of small and 37 percent of medium-sized hospitals have suffered at least one data breach in the last few years? As per a report by The American Journal of Managed Care, smaller hospitals lack the cybersecurity resources to detect data breaches. It becomes difficult for the regional community hospitals to get the security resources and the financial support they need to go hand in hand with the healthcare industry’s robust regulations.
Another challenging factor is the adoption of a cloud-based application. Hospitals have significant data in the cloud, and they act as the gatekeepers to these massive quantities of patients’ private information. Only the network administrators or users have the right to or the permissions to access this data; they may carelessly or maliciously misuse it, causing exposure to risk and heavy fines. Large healthcare organizations can afford strong privacy and security measures, and therefore the malicious actors attack the community hospitals as they can fetch huge amounts of data from them, and through it, they can also have access to larger organization’s data too.
Here are three recommendations for stronger data security.
1. Employee Education: It is mandatory to build a workforce that embraces healthcare compliance, safety, and accountability. Training employees on security and regulations contribute to the development and success of an organization. Rewarding positive behavior will strengthen the office culture and punishing the offenders will reinforce accountability. The motive is to prevent data breaches because of an inside error rather than discovering it later.
2. Monitoring the Cloud: By regular patient monitoring of the cloud-based environment, one can ensure trust among customers. The more insight one has into how users are interacting with the applications; the more one can secure and optimize their business systems to produce favorable outcomes.
3. Outsourcing: When their organization is new to cloud computing, it is better to work with a third party when the former does not have the IT bandwidth. The third party takes that monitoring load off from the IT personnel and educates the community hospital on the need to comply with compliance regulations.
Where on the one hand large organizations live under the mandate to keep the patient data secure, small organizations find it harder due to financial constraints. Implementing cloud monitoring could be one possible solution to prevent data breaches. Education employees and third-party assistance are a few additional ways to keep patient data safe.