The Frontier of Healthcare Data Security

Censinet CEO and founder, Ed Gaudet moderated a panel at the event which sought to discuss the current third-party risk landscape and the effects the healthcare industry is feeling as the result of technological advancements.

Ed Gaudet | December 3, 2019

Censinet CEO and founder, Ed Gaudet moderated a panel at the event which sought to discuss the current third-party risk landscape and the effects the healthcare industry is feeling as the result of technological advancements.

This fall, the College of Healthcare Information and Medical Executives (CHIME) hosted a gathering of Chief Information Officers and other senior healthcare IT leaders to discuss changing trends in the industry. Established in 1992, the professional organization aims to enable its 2,900 members and business partners to come together, share ideas, develop professional skills, and advocate for the use of information management to advance the healthcare industry.

The theme of CHIME19 was “Into the Future,” as industry executives grapple with ways to create a sustainable balance between security and convenience in an ever-evolving environment. As CHIME Chair Cletis Earle stated during his opening remarks, “healthcare is shifting to give patients care when, where, and how they want it.”

Censinet and the Modernization of Risk Assessment Processes

Censinet CEO and founder, Ed Gaudet moderated a panel at the event which sought to discuss the current third-party risk landscape and the effects the healthcare industry is feeling as the result of technological advancements. The panel included executives from some of the nation’s leading healthcare providers, who discussed the frontier of data security and the need for innovative ways to aggregate data in a continuous and holistic manner.

Shifting Responsibility Landscape for IT Security Executives

As many panel speakers noted, the role of the contemporary CIO is undergoing profound changes due to developments in the ways risk is managed. Unfortunately, this means that many of the tools healthcare organizations and their IT security teams have implemented to identify, assess, and remediate risk are no longer as effective as they were historically. Antiquated risk assessment tools and processes such as ad hoc reporting, disorganized spreadsheets, and email chains are unable to keep pace with the growth of cybersecurity threats in current healthcare environments. Throughout the event, panelists discussed their priorities of supporting the evolution of IT and necessities for implementing innovative risk assessment processes that will optimize security systems and improve the care of patients.

Consumer-Based Solutions for the Future

Not only are CIOs feeling increasing pressure from a data protection perspective, but technologically-savvy, informed patients are beginning to expect more from IT leaders as well. As Darren Dworkin, CIO at Cedars-Sinai notes, technology is rapidly becoming “part of the product,” further complicating the consumer relationship between security executives, clinicians, and the patients they serve. Improving the consumer experience to foster an environment where consumers can engage with healthcare providers in a way that’s convenient and beneficial to them is another aspect that organizations will need to define moving forward.

Organization-Wide Education as a First Defense

Comprehensive organizational data security and protection education is another chief area of focus for Aaron Miri, CIO for Dell Medical Institute at the University of Texas at Austin. With over 20% of reported healthcare data breaches occurring as the result of a third-party vendor relationship, it is crucial for employees within all departments of a hospital business to be educated on the risks associated with data security to prevent cybersecurity breaches. CIO at Baystate Health, Joel Vengco mirrored these concerns, emphasizing that education is a constant process and necessary to ensure the continuous protection of patient and organizational data.

Industry-wide innovation is possible through leadership and collaboration. To join the movement and learn more about how your peers are working to mitigate risk while empowering patients with consumer choice, watch the full video.

View the full video from this CIO panel.

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