Information Security in Healthcare Organizations

Discuss information security credentials and the necessary qualifications for a healthcare organization. How should the outsourcing of security be decided? What are the risks and benefits of outsourcing? What training may be necessary for a healthcare organization and consultants based upon HIPAA and HITECH?

Answer

Information Security in Healthcare Organizations

With the increased use of technology in healthcare comes an increased risk of security breaches. In light of the potential security risks, healthcare organizations may seek assistance from business process outsourcing (BPO) personnel to ensure the safety of patient’s health information. However, finding a HIPAA-compliant organization/personnel with a proven track record in data security may complicate the process of seeking the assistance of a BPO (International Information System Security Certification Consortium, 2022). The following discussion encompasses a list of security credentials required for a healthcare organization, how outsourcing is decided with its associated risks and benefits, and the necessary HIPAA and HITECH training employees may require.

The top requirements for a security BPO partner to be looked for are a background in health informatics and a proven track record of data security. Furthermore, the most reliable BPO partners have spent years constructing a healthcare data security infrastructure, as well as best practices (Benil & Jasper, 2020). Moreover, they understand how to keep the systems up to date continuously. While outsourcing, a healthcare organization advertises its need for a BPO on their website or in the newspaper and looks for a partner who provides HIPAA-compliant services, such as claims and enrollment, counseling on data security issues, and experience speaking with patients and providers (Berry et al., 2021). The benefits of outsourcing security include access to a network of agents who specialize in all areas of data security, including physical and biometric protection of health information.

Although outsourcing for data security has numerous advantages, it also carries risks, such as the budget for BPO partners and the regulatory and technological complexities. To ensure a smooth operation, the healthcare organization’s employees and consultants must be trained on privacy procedures such as the effective use of passwords, biometric-enabled logins, and data encryption, as recommended by HIPAA and HITECH (Edemekong et al., 2022). Furthermore, as a strategy to allow them to handle patients’ protected health information with rigor, they should be trained and informed of the consequences of potential breaches to their security.

 

References

Benil, T., & Jasper, J. (2020). Cloud-based security on outsourcing using blockchain in E-health systems. Computer Networks178(107344), 107344. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.comnet.2020.107344

Berry, L. L., Letchuman, S., Ramani, N., & Barach, P. (2021). The high stakes of outsourcing in health care. Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Mayo Clinic96(11), 2879–2890. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mayocp.2021.07.003

Edemekong, P. F., Annamaraju, P., & Haydel, M. J. (2022). Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. In StatPearls [Internet]. StatPearls Publishing. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK500019/

International Information System Security Certification Consortium. (2022). HCISPP – The HealthCare Security Certification. Isc2.org. https://www.isc2.org/Certifications/HCISPP

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