Healthcare News & Insights

Healthcare data security: What it costs you

Did you know that 2011 breaches of protected heath information (PHI) increased 97% over 2010 levels? Did you also know that 60% of those breaches resulted from malicious intent? And the number of patient health records affected totaled 19 million.

These statistics are from the Redspin research report “Breach Report 2011: Protected Health Information.”

Of course certain things like encrypting data on all mobile devices is a necessity at any hospital nowadays. You’d be surprised, however, how many facilities don’t do it.

This problem is just going to get worse with employees bringing their smartphones, iPads, etc. to work.

In fact, 39% of all PHI breaches to date are from laptops or other portable devices. They’re the easiest things for thieves to steal and, even more likely, employees to loose. And — here’s the shocking part — 50% of respondents in a recent healthcare IT poll say their facilities aren’t doing anything to protect data on those devices.

Some options for securing PHI aren’t that expensive, but options that provide top of the line security are obviously more expensive.

For example, the Boyd Company estimates that healthcare data security spending in 2012 will go over $40 billion. That’s a 22% increase from 2011 levels. And it’ll top $70 billion by 2015.

The Boyd Company created an analysis of the costs of operating a healthcare data security center in U.S. cities. The analysis looked at the cost of skilled labor in health information and data security; land costs; construction costs; taxes; utilities; corporate travel and other occupancy costs.

The annual costs in the study were based on centers occupying 150,000 sq. ft of newly constructed space, and employing 150 workers.

It found that some cities are most cost effective for operating a healthcare data security center than others.

Top 3 most expensive locales

  1. New York
  2. San Francisco
  3. Los Angeles

Top 3 lowest cost locales

  1. Sioux Falls, SD
  2. Tulsa, OK
  3. Ft. Walton/Destin, FL

For more information about the Boyd Company report, “Healthcare Services Industry: A  Comparative Cost Analysis for Information Assurance Operations,” click here.

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