Health Information Management

Tips to keep your information secure

HIM-HIPAA Insider, October 12, 2010

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The list of breaches of unsecured PHI on the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) website continues to grow since becoming public in February. Consider the following tips to help your healthcare organization protect patients’ PHI:

  • Pay attention to the breaches already reported on the OCR website. Organizations should read the summaries and communicate the scenarios to their staff members, says Lesley Berkeyheiser, of N-Tegrity Solutions Group in Glen Mills, PA, and cochair for the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange Strategic National Implementation Process.
  • Secure your laptop and desktop computers. Given that the theft of laptop computers is the No. 1 cause of breaches, followed by the theft of desktop computers and removable media, organizations need to ensure their security, says Christopher Hourihan, manager of common security framework development and operations at HITRUST, the Health Information Trust Alliance in Frisco, TX. With the large amount of PHI stored on laptop and desktop computers, a key to security is control of these devices, he says.
Editor’s note: For more information on the above tips as well as several others, view the October issue of Briefings on HIPAA. Subscribers have access to the full article in their newsletter.



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