Technology has helped many industries push beyond their limits and embrace new operational methods that may not have been possible in the past. One of these industries is healthcare and medical IT. Thanks to these advancements, patients have more options now than ever before in how much control they have over their records, but providers must be wary of these changes in order to take advantage of them.
Electronic Medical Records
If you think about it, how many different doctors and practitioners does a single patient see throughout their lifetime? How about even during a single year? All of these doctors need access to the latest files in order for them to provide the best service possible to their patients. Unfortunately, keeping track of all these files can be challenging, and storing them in a secure location means keeping them locked in filing cabinets that take up a ton of space.
Electronic Medical Record (EMR) solutions are a viable solution here, as the patient records can be stored in a secure digital environment that can be consulted by the doctor as needed. While it doesn’t necessarily solve the issue of doctors needing access whenever possible, it does solve the physical space and security permissions issue to a certain extent. It certainly helps more than just having a filing cabinet that anyone can access at any given time.
Blockchain as a Solution
Even the above scenario in which numerous professionals need access to files can potentially be circumvented in the future through the use of technology. Blockchain could give users the ability to not only keep their doctors accountable, but also provide them with medical documents and information from other practitioners without the need to wait for documents to arrive at the new office. Plus, the blockchain is known for being permanent unless the majority of the network agrees that records must be changed, and even if they are changed, each subsequent record must be altered to reflect said change. It could be the perfect for maintaining security and accessibility of records.
HIPAA Compliance Reinforces Adoption
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA for short, has several aspects that must be addressed in order to maintain compliance. Essentially, HIPAA is designed to reinforce privacy of protected health information, or PHI. There limits placed on what can and can’t be shared. Information protected by HIPAA includes names, Social Security numbers, physical and mental wellness, treatments provided to patients, and payment information for services rendered. Any organization that uses this information as part of the health or medical industries must be compliant with HIPAA or face steep fines.
Does your business want to ensure HIPAA compliance? To learn more, reach out to us at (815) 929-9850.