In the age of healthcare technology with Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Software, Practice Management (PM) software, and patient portal platform patients are can easily access their medical records and stay connected with their healthcare providers seamlessly. However, with the many benefits of being in the digital age patients’ health data is vulnerable and at risk of privacy breaches from hackers. Personal health data is no longer private with social media platforms, wearable fitness trackers, and apps related to monitoring pregnancy and mental health conditions.

Patients concerns regarding privacy and their personal information

In the age of cloud services, the risk of data breaches and ransomware attacks is always there. This means patient data related to medical records, credit card information and social security numbers can be hacked. These healthcare breaches happen because hackers want some monetary benefit or have a political or corporate agenda. Many hospital systems and healthcare providers have made patient privacy one of their top priorities to up digital security.

With the wide adaption of EHR software systems patients are more worried as their private health data is more vulnerable to security threats. The  HIPAA Journal revealed that 80% of the patients rated patient privacy as highly crucial and patient privacy was more important to women as compared to men. Saying that what can be done to ensure encryption and privacy of patient data? Fortunately, there are a few security protocols that can be followed regularly to maintain data privacy.

How to keep patient information protected in 2021?

There are many precautions that the healthcare sector can take to keep patient files protected without compromising on safety. Your medical practice needs to have a HIPAA Compliant platform that can ensure secure two-way communication between stakeholders involved in the healthcare journey. Practices can also limit the access of users by using strong passwords and multi-factor authentication.

Data controls can also be used to alert your practice to any unusual or suspicious activities. These controls help to block actions in real-time and send alerts when sensitive patient data is being shared and transmitted.

Healthcare providers can also use data encryption methods which makes it tough for hackers to decode patient data and hence enhances safety levels when data is shared between healthcare providers. With mobile access facility, it is crucial to safeguard both networks and devices by using remote locks, configurations, and passwords.

It is also important that your practice educates its staff members about the importance of patient privacy and encryption so everyone has aligned ethical and corporate beliefs.

Conclusion

Patient privacy standards cannot be compromised by any means and practices need to be driven to secure their IT infrastructure. Healthcare providers need to stay active against any security breaches and protect them in the first place by updating software systems and installing a smart firewall. It is important to remember that securing patient data is your responsibility and enhancing business cybersecurity practices means patients are relaxed and feel assured that their sensitive and personal data is not as exposed as they think.