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Introduction to healthcare information privacy and security concerns

Introduction to healthcare information privacy and security concerns

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A systematic collection of electronic health information of individuals (Electronic Health Record or EHR) in general has been picking up lately. We are gradually leaving behind the extensive paper trail along with the illegible handwriting of many physicians and a headache to compile the patient history from the pile of papers. EHR presented itself with several benefits including cost reduction, easy data maintenance and interpretation, use of one's medical history as a reference for similar cases, data sharing, fmding trends or correlations in medical histories to detect an anomaly or maybe a cure. To offer these benefits, an EHR system should have properties like high availability, failure resilient, data completeness, secure and privy among others. While numerous benefits are being offered by EHR, given the insecurities in the digital world, it is easily threatened by hackers, worms, viruses and similar attackers. These issues may arise during storage of data, communication of data and use of data. Though several standards and policies like ISO 13606 and ISO/TR 20514 exist citing various guidelines associated with EHR, but individual implementers may choose to put them aside or may not be even aware of them. We would outline such different security and privacy issues while using electronic health records in this paper.

Chapter Contents:

  • 2.1 Introduction to electronic health records
  • 2.1.1 Paper-based records
  • 2.1.2 Moving toward EHR
  • 2.2 Components of an EHR
  • 2.2.1 Core components of an EHR
  • 2.2.2 Additional desirable capabilities
  • 2.3 Challenges in EHR adoption
  • 2.3.1 Technological makeover
  • 2.3.2 Financial challenge
  • 2.3.3 Personnel cooperation
  • 2.3.4 Interoperability
  • 2.3.5 Integration with other systems
  • 2.3.6 Usability
  • 2.3.7 Data completeness and correctness
  • 2.3.8 Storage of EHR data
  • 2.3.9 Security of EHR data
  • 2.3.10 Privacy concerns
  • 2.4 Security concerns in healthcare information
  • 2.4.1 Physical security
  • 2.4.2 Application security
  • 2.4.3 Server security
  • 2.4.4 Periphery security
  • 2.4.5 Storage and communication security
  • 2.4.6 Ubiquitous device security
  • 2.4.7 Preserving confidentiality
  • 2.4.8 Data integrity
  • 2.4.9 Data availability
  • 2.4.10 Audit trail
  • 2.4.11 Mock drills
  • 2.4.12 Data breach and mandatory disclosure
  • 2.5 Curbing security concerns
  • 2.6 Privacy concerns in healthcare information
  • 2.6.1 Major issues driving privacy front
  • Real owner of patient data
  • Social media penetration
  • Sharing data with external entities
  • Role-based access and authorization
  • 2.6.2 Privacy laws and guidelines
  • Indian context
  • US context
  • 2.6.3 Using blockchain for privacy protection
  • Homomorphic encryption
  • State channels
  • 2.6.4 Protecting patient data privacy
  • References

Inspec keywords: electronic health records; security of data; data privacy

Other keywords: healthcare information privacy; ISO 13606 standard; electronic health record; EHR; ISO/TR 20514 standard; healthcare information security; electronic health information

Subjects: Medical administration; Data security

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