As communication systems have become more versatile, powerful and ubiquitous, the need for a secure communication platform has become more and more important. This is particularly true in healthcare where federal privacy laws and some state laws greatly restrict the transfer, sharing and even possession of certain individual medical data. What all that means is that apart from a secure platform, you have to have a communications plan. Here are three elements that are vital to that plan being a success.
Historical Document Record
In the days of paper files, it was relatively easy to modify a document, destroy it or add to it. Just because our data is now stored on hard drives or mobile storage devices does not mean anything has changed. One individual with access to medical data can change just about anything they want.
Because of that reality and because of document sharing technology, maintaining a history of a document in every instance of editing as well as every person who has access to that data is vital. This is particularly true in the event of a breach. You do not want to be guessing who did what to what data if a breach occurs. A historical record of all actions and contacts related to a document goes a great way towards providing your organization with liability coverage.
There are various types of communication encryption available and you should make sure that the system your organization uses, to the greatest extent possible, exceeds industry standards. While no security mechanism is full proof, encryption is pretty close. You should insist that the communication software or devices you use have a way of encrypting data at least as it is transmitted.
Know What Devices Your Team Uses
It seems like just about everyone has a preferred method of electronic communications. The security systems on some are better than others. If you are not going with a fully dedicated device platform, such as everyone uses an iPhone, then you must make sure that every communication device each team member uses is documented and has a secure communication solutions framework.
Security of medical data has become a major issue as more and more personal data is stored both in electronic format and online. By following these three guidelines for a secure communication platform, you can go a long way towards making sure your data is as secure as it needs to be.