How Does mHospital Ensure Patient Data Privacy?
mHospital understands the significance of patient data privacy and leaves no loopholes to protect it. The ultimate objectives of our commitment to data security of patients includes data confidentiality, integrity and availability.
Data security violations in healthcare sector have reached an alarmingly high level. This challenge is intensely concerning for patients as well as the regulatory bodies. Many healthcare providers turn a blind eye toward ensuring patient data privacy while it should have been one of the primary concerns. At mHospital, data privacy gets utmost care using our comprehensive security framework.
Before revealing the technologies and strategies that we employ to protect the confidentiality, integrity and availability of data while serving patients via online doctor app or other channels, it is pertinent to mention the types of data breaches that occur frequently and those less often.
Types of Data Breaches in Healthcare
- End User System Limitations
- Data used as a commodity
- Internal security breach
Computers with relatively old operating systems are vulnerable to intrusions. The global ransomware attack of May 2017 wreaked havoc on healthcare systems internationally with British NHS affected the most. This virus intruded the systems whose Windows operating system was not updated with the then latest patch that could have prevented the virus.
Companies claim that they sell data anonymously. However, anonymous info can be rematched with the assistance of advanced classification algorithms in machine learning. Many firms sell data blatantly. In essence, they don’t even bother to hide personal info. Most of these firms get away without facing legal charges in most US states for absence of a comprehensive data privacy framework as GDPR in Europe.
Google is widely believed to have bought Fitbit to get hands on the huge amount of healthcare data that they could sell to healthcare companies.
Picture a person using Fitbit app getting unusually high heart rate. Google can share the info of this user to healthcare a company since users provide consent while agreeing to the terms and conditions. The healthcare firms can then run social media ads to pitch their services to all such people who have high heart rate. This is just one example. There are scores of others. For this reason, data is labeled as the new oil (Invaluable commodity).
The breaches within an organization occur for generally two main reasons.
- Intentional Breach
- Human Error
An employee may make a set of confidential records public for personal reasons/gains. One may also sell the record for personal gains without consent of patient.
Poorly trained staff may end up leaking confidential data mistakenly. Records may also get permanently corrupted.
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A hacking technique that allows copying the data while sending across a channel. Data that is remotely accessed (particularly EHR) is susceptible to eavesdropping and needs an extensive security framework in place to prevent intrusions. Eavesdropping is easier to achieve when the network used to send data does not follow the security protocols.
A malware sent via email disguised under the name of a file that is apparently useful. Upon clicking on the link, the malware penetrates into the host system and takes over confidential files. Phishing is one of the most common sources of patient data privacy breaches. The intruder performs phishing to enable ransomware attacks where the owner of host system would need to pay ransom in bitcoins to get back the control of the system.
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Our Commitment to Data Security in Healthcare
mHospital understands the significance of patient data privacy and leaves no loopholes to protect it while delivering healthcare via home visit doctor, telemedicine or serving at doctor’s office. Our staff is extensively trained to prevent internal breaches while the technical team has developed multi-tier security to avert external threats. The ultimate objectives of our commitment to data security of patients includes:
Personal data would never be shared with a third-party user without consent of patient. We don’t even share the data anonymously unless explicitly allowed.
Manipulation of actual information with fabricated one is strictly prohibited. We have added checks and verification features to ensure that no dataset gets modified without approval. Even if any amount of data is modified or deleted, we have backups to retrieve it.
Any attempt for data corruption or concealing that is usually practiced to earn monetary benefits is identified and averted before it could cause any damage. We have placed multiple firewalls to guarantee formidable defense around our databases.
Our Notable Measures to Safeguard Patient Data Privacy
- The acquisition of controlled substance through e-prescription is governed by a two-factor authentication (2FA). In essence, the requesting body needs to get approval at two levels.
- SSL encryption on website enables safe transmission of data with no likelihood of SQL injection – a kind of a digital intrusion that allows manipulation or corruption of records.
- Access to piece of information is provided on need-to-know basis with clear hierarchy. In essence, no one can reach data placed above one’s access hierarchy.
- mHospital does not store credit card info within its database. Rather the card info is stored on Authorize.Net – a third-party payment management service verified by the financial regulatory authorities.
- Every piece of info is only shared after sufficient approval and verifications. The users who interact with data have rights-driven access only.
Is Your Data Secure?
Getting healthcare services is unavoidable. Everyone has to see a doctor at home or elsewhere at some point in time. You need to be sure that your healthcare provider takes sufficient measures to keep your privacy intact. They may not public the data intentionally but the underlying technology of their platform may not be mature enough to safeguard patient data privacy.
mHospital takes data security as seriously as quality healthcare delivery. We invite independent auditors to test our platform and share their recommendations on how we can further enhance data security.
Do you intend to schedule a doctor appointment online? Schedule one via our online doctor app or using our patient portal