Sharing information is a necessity when working in the healthcare field. Doctors, nurses and the administration team often need to collaborate on information in order to diagnose, prescribe medication, design a treatment plan and bill patients accurately. Although, a significant amount of communication is done, it is crucial that the privacy of the patient is protected. There are steps that organizations can follow to make sure personal and sensitive information is protected at all times.
- Create security policies and processes within the organization, or health care practice.
- Implement training so that employees are fully informed on privacy and HIPPA laws.
- Select the best secured method for sharing information. Remember emails, texting and even faxing are inherently insecure. There is a huge risk of breach when transmitting sensitive information through paper fax machines. Important information could sit exposed in trays for anyone to see before being retrieved.
- Be sure to ask recipients of personal documents how they plan to protect the privacy of the information before sending it. Emails are practical ways to relate quick internal messages, but when dealing with personal information it is imperative to use services that guarantee security.
- Do not assume that passwords will protect private information. Over time people looking to steal information can crack the most complicated passwords. Emphasize to employees that passwords, usernames and PINs are never to be shared with anyone.
It is important to take precaution by all means necessary when disclosing personal and sensitive information. Ensuring administrative, technical, and physical safeguards are in place, will help prevent vital information from falling into the wrong hands.
If you need assistance reducing the amount of time you are spending managing your HIPAA risk, please contact us about the myCompliance Portal.