With technological innovations and digital advancements inevitable, it's important for healthcare professionals to stay up to date on the expected developments in 2018. After identifying major health and technology trends to keep an eye out for in 2018, leaders from the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) of North America highlighted a common theme for the new year: patients will value a deeper connection between providers, information and technology. Plus, providers will begin to rely more heavily on technology and digital health solutions for data collection, cyberattack protection and increased ease and efficiency in patient care.
Despite the fact that good medical care requires meticulous record keeping and highly sensitive data, the industry hasn't focused much on cybersecurity until recently. Unfortunately, securing these records doesn't have an immediate, visible impact on patient care, and providers already have their hands full providing patients with quality service—but what if your practice was unable to access the technology and records that you rely on because a hacker was holding them hostage? Now the importance of cyber-security measures become much more apparent.
Ignoring cybersecurity has devastating consequences. According to Gemalto, a global digital security firm, the healthcare industry saw 263 data breaches during the first half of 2016. Comprising 27 percent of all breaches, this was the greatest number of incidents for any industry. Another article from Infosec Institute states that “stolen patient health records can fetch as much as $363 per record,” which makes it worth more than any other piece of data.” Credit card numbers, for example, only bring in a few dollars.