Healthcare News & Insights

3 ways healthcare organizations can transform compliance into a business enabler

In today’s world, every company is a technology company, meaning that every company is also a data company – with valuable information to protect. This is especially true for healthcare organizations that have access to sensitive data like patient social security numbers, medical histories, credit card numbers and other personal information. In this guest post, Karry Kleeman, CRO of a company that helps organizations bring clarity, collaboration and accountability to their governance, risk and compliance (GRC) processes, explains how secure IT systems can free up providers’ time to focus on patient care.

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Unsurprisingly, healthcare organizations’ access to data makes them perfect targets for hackers to attack. According to HIPAA Journal, there were 2,546 healthcare data breaches between 2009 and 2018. From those breaches, 189,945,874 healthcare records were stolen or exposed equating to nearly 60% of the population of the United States.

With the use of third-party vendors, healthcare organizations’ IT responsibility goes beyond their own systems and employees. Now, healthcare organizations are responsible for the data protection practices of vendors across supply chains. Beyond securing channels through which hackers infiltrate healthcare organizations, IT security is a gateway to unlocking new business opportunities.

Expedites processes

Rather than wasting time digging through paper records, healthcare organizations can keep all business information in a secure IT system giving healthcare providers time to focus their attention back on patient care. Reports can easily be pulled and handed off to the right parties, reducing errors and providing more accountability in the process. This builds efficiency and accelerates value.

Additionally, processes are mapped to controls that allow managers to easily find reports and data for auditors. Built-in frameworks automatically update with the latest standards. The overall number of audit findings are likely to be reduced and audit time cut down from weeks to days.

Defines risks

Understanding risks allow healthcare organizations to be better prepared for potential security breaches. For this, protocols can be put in place to mitigate threats. Executives can project where the greatest opportunities are for business growth, without exposing the company to unnecessary risk.

The best way to view an organization’s risk stature is through a risk management system. Workflows show a clear picture of how one risk affects another. Risk assessment forms allow information to be collected and analyzed for easy review. Every decision can then be clearly calculated to move the business forward. Healthcare organizations taking this step will be more productive by recognizing risks, instilling confidence that their business and patient data will be secure.

Empowers teams

Oftentimes, tracking compliance and risk can be manual and labor-intensive, causing IT staff to focus on only one out of the multitude of tasks they must manage. Having a dependable IT security system enables healthcare organizations to prove compliance by housing all procedures in a single location, providing high-level oversight to ensure all important requirements are accounted for.

By utilizing a secure system, organizations can perform a gap analysis uncovering areas where their company is noncompliant. This analysis helps healthcare organizations uncover the percentage of completion with regard to a specific compliance standard, offering a clear picture of when the organization can expect to be fully compliant.

It’s not a matter of if a company will be breached, but when. While all healthcare organizations have some level of IT security in place, utilizing it to its full advantage goes beyond securing data. Healthcare organizations with a sound IT security system not only have a full view of risk within the company, but processes and workflows also save employees time. This enables the organization to take on more business in an efficient manner, maintaining compliance and reducing risk.

Karry Kleeman is the CRO at LogicGate, a company that helps organizations bring clarity, collaboration and accountability to their governance, risk and compliance (GRC) processes. Karry brings over 30 years of experience in enterprise software leadership to LogicGate.

                                                           

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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