With the surge in telehealth and telemedicine during the COVID-19 pandemic, healthcare providers are transforming their service delivery model to help patients stay safe while getting the treatment they need. Telemedicine empowers physicians to improve outcomes in many ways. Telemedicine offers the flexibility of remote screening not only during regular business hours, but can expand to after hour calls, enabling providers to make more informed decisions about proceeding with treatment options or seeking emergency care. Co-pays can be easily managed with secure payment storage options. Technology transforms the options for primary care physicians and specialists to collaborate in real-time, and the flexibility offered by telehealth offers endless options for new patient care models to be served by a team of professionals in ways never imagined before.
Plus, patients are happy with the convenience of virtual healthcare. According to a research study conducted by MGH, 79% of patients felt that telehealth appointments could be scheduled to a more convenient time than office visits, and “68 percent of patients rated virtual video visits at 9 or 10 on a 10-point scale.” Telehealth has many benefits, but it does not come without security concerns and challenges. Practitioners need to ensure they have ample cybersecurity in their healthcare networks and IT ecosystems.
“Cybersecurity is of utmost importance for any medical practice,” said Les Peterson, CEO, ITC2. “Storage of sensitive patient data and network security are important areas to consider when leveraging security solutions for telemedicine and maintenance of patient records.”
Why are medical practices one of the largest targets for cyber attackers?
Because of the increased technological innovation in the healthcare field and rise of remote care via telehealth, systems are more vulnerable to cyberattacks due to the increase in potential points of entry. According to Entrepreneur magazine, as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, cybercriminals have been exploiting the strain of the healthcare crisis to deliver malware, compromising the infrastructure of hospitals, urgent care facilities, and other medical practices. These security breaches are often followed by a demand ransom to restore the systems. Additionally, cybercriminals target medical networks for unauthorized access to sensitive patient information and data. Cybersecurity in healthcare is necessary, but it doesn’t have to be a headache for your medical practice.
Are you confident in your network connection?
Patients are seeking stability and effective care with their healthcare providers. Telehealth is one way to encourage more collaboration and patient communication, especially during the time of COVID-19. By focusing on network security, resilience is bolstered by maintaining quality of service and continuity of patient care despite typical cybersecurity threats to the healthcare industry. Practitioners can feel confident in the quality and accuracy of the data transmitted over the network when appropriate steps are taken to ensure effective cybersecurity in healthcare.
Cybersecurity in healthcare is often thought about from a perspective of keeping data safe, but there is so much more to cybersecurity than one would typically think. Imagine the wide range of technological uses for cybersecurity in healthcare, ranging from patient files to remote surgeries assisted by artificial intelligence. Quality of network connection and service is of upmost importance in all healthcare scenarios. At ITC2, it isn’t something we take lightly.
Professionals at Healthcare IT Today and Health IT Security highlighted some important solutions to consider for effective cybersecurity in healthcare. Here are some of our favorite tips:
- Secure Wireless Connectivity- Full integration and configuration of secure wireless access within the provider’s network is an essential component of cybersecurity in healthcare.
- Multifactor Authentication- Network security is enhanced by requiring more than just a password and maintaining best practices in password use.
- Data Loss Prevention- Protected Health Information should be secure through this functionality.
- Advanced Threat Protection- Local IT teams can analyze suspicious content such as malware before it becomes problematic.
- Secure Telephony- Telephone calls with providers should be facilitated via solutions that secure and monitor the traffic.
- Continuous Endpoint Posture Checking- Endpoints are vulnerable outside of the network’s perimeter security with remote options for employees. Therefore, organizations must implement endpoint privilege management to control access.
- User Experience and Encryption- VPN solutions foster compliance by ensuring data is encrypted.
- Load Balancing Tech- dynamic load balancing of application performance is important to ensure secure and improved application performance and delivery between systems and practitioners.
Are employees working remotely from secure devices?
Ask a consultant at ITC2 today for the best practices regarding remote cybersecurity in healthcare practices. Employees need a strong network connection with secure devices that are shielded from an imminent cyberattack when working remote.
Employees and patients need to ensure cybersecurity in healthcare through best practices when using telemedicine. Ensuring that employees are well-trained and are downloading components of their remote work site from reputable online stores or through links sent directly through the company’s portal is one way to prevent cybersecurity breaches. Understand the telemedicine apps and how they store patient data with HIPAA compliance. Look out for malicious telehealth links and fishing campaigns to ensure employees are downloading your healthcare portal only, and ensure they have the appropriate training for cybersecurity in healthcare from an end-user perspective. Let ITC2 help you set up your remote workforce today to ensure the best practices for cybersecurity in healthcare.
Do you know what security risks and susceptibility your current network has?
The first step is to know and assess your existing network in order to provide recommendations for improvement and pinpoint vulnerabilities. ITC2 can optimize your costs while implementing best practices for cybersecurity in healthcare through Digital Optimization™ of your practice. We provide healthcare customers with access to an extensive range of carrier and cloud service through a carefully selected portfolio of trusted partners and service providers. We can assist you in your network upgrade to ensure stronger cybersecurity within your healthcare practice.
What are ITC2’s Core Service Offerings for Healthcare?
Need more information?
ITC2 connects practitioners and patients through the world of telehealth. With healthcare access at your fingertips, medical professionals are able to screen patients securely and prioritize urgent needs.
If cybersecurity in healthcare is a concern for your practice, let ITC2 help you! ITC2’s diverse team of subject matter experts will assist you with your telemedicine ecosystem.
When planning for cybersecurity in healthcare, quality of bandwidth is crucial for network security. We’ll increase your bandwidth capacity while optimizing costs. Let ITC2 extend and support your IT and procurement teams of your medical practice without cost to you!
ITC2 is a Gartner recognized Minority Business Enterprise Supplier with a 94% customer satisfaction rating from Dunn & Bradstreet, a requirement to do business with Federal, State, County and City Governments.
For more information, call (404) 507-2105, visit ITC2.net, follow us on Facebook (@DigitalOptimizationSolutions), LinkedIn (@ITC2), and Twitter (@ITCtwo).