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Healthcare Security: The Need is Critical

Along with the sweeping changes of health care reform, healthcare technology has advanced rapidly in the past few years. Innovations such as electronic health records have taken shape, offering more effective ways to access, store and share patient information — all with the goal of improving the quality and consistency of care.

While these technologies have their benefits, they also have challenges, especially when it comes to the security risks surrounding personal health information (PHI).

For the healthcare industry, data breaches leading to compromised PHI have been a persistent and serious problem. According to recent reports, more than 29 million patient records have been compromised since 2009. And the annual number of breaches increased a startling 138% between 2012 and 2013.

Many of these incidents have come at a considerable cost to organizations. For instance, in February of 2014, Triple-S Management Corp., a managed care organization serving Puerto Rico, made headlines for a breach involving more than 13,000 individuals’ PHI, resulting in a whopping $6.8 million fine.

And the negative consequences of such events are not limited to organizations. In addition to the violation of privacy they experience, individuals whose PHI has been compromised face a considerable risk of identity theft. In its 2014 Patient Privacy and Data Security study, the Ponemon Institute reported that 43% of identity theft in 2013 involved medical data.

As the healthcare industry moves increasingly toward tech-enhanced models for information sharing, data security is a critical concern and should be a priority for providers, business partners and insurers alike. However, focusing resources on enhanced security while also implementing reform-based process changes and delivering top-quality care can be an overwhelming proposition.

Lunarline developed our healthcare security solutions with this challenge in mind. With our skill and experience solely focused on security, we can simplify the task of meeting HIPAA and HITECH compliance standards, analyze and resolve vulnerabilities, establish procedures for PHI handling and incident response, and much more.

Regardless of where you are with your data security initiatives, Lunarline can help you keep up with the breakneck pace of changes in the industry. To discuss a tailored solution for your organization, please contact us at arrahitech@lunarline.com.

About Spence Witten

Spence has somehow survived ten years at start-ups and small businesses without suffering a (major) nervous breakdown. As Lunarline's Director of Federal Sales, Spence actually loves working on proposals. If there were any doubt, this is proof that he is in fact certifiably insane. While his title says "Sales" Lunarline doesn't let him off that easy. We make him do real work, too. Luckily he's a recognized subject matter expert in security policy and loves helping clients navigate their way around tricky security compliance standards. He's also been known to lead a software development initiative or two, though that pretty much always ends poorly for everyone involved. He can be reached at spence.witten@lunarline.com.