Blog Archives

Advocate Health Care already facing first lawsuit for July 15 breach involving 4 million EHR patient records

Chicago area Advocate Health Care suffered the country’s biggest health care record breach to date on July 15 – when four unencrypted laptops containing over four million patient records were stolen.  Seven weeks later the legal repercussions to July’s event

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Computer viruses in medical devices: who should bear the costs for combatting? FDA issues warning, takes action

Computer virus infections of medical devices continue to be a serious issue, keeping healthcare provider IT departments busy removing malware.  (See our October 2012 blog post “Computer viruses on hospital medical devices: a growing concern; possible solutions“).  The FDA has

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Settlement of first small scale HIPAA breach announced by HHS

In a sign that HHS is serious about small data breaches, the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) and The Hospice of North Idaho reached a settlement agreement to resolve allegations of a 2010 breach involving 441 patient records. OCR Director Leon Rodriguez

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HHS Inspector General: Medicare EHR incentive program lacks adequate safeguards against error and fraud

The HHS Inspector General this week reported the results of its recent investigation to “verify the accuracy of professionals’ and hospitals’ self-reported meaningful-use information, as well as eligibility and payment amounts.”   The investigation reviewed payments issued from May through December

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3.8 million record breach in South Carolina: lessons learned

Hackers recently infiltrated South Carolina’s state tax records, absconding with the largest haul to date of Social Security numbers, credit and debit card numbers from a state agency. State officials describe how the theft was worked, and list enhanced security

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EHR access lost during Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy this week tested East Coast health care systems’ electronic infrastructure.  Emergency preparedness plans were implemented fairly successfully for most health care facilities, allowing them to continue to operate adequately.  Others, however, were negatively impacted, including some which lost access

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Computer viruses on hospital medical devices: a growing concern; possible solutions

Medical device security experts report increasing issues with computer viruses on hospital medical devices. Problem sources include inconsistent and/or incompatible security measures, as well as outdated operating systems. The Government Accounting Office has sounded the alarm, requesting the FDA to

Posted in HIPAA Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Computer viruses on hospital medical devices: a growing concern; possible solutions

Medical device security experts report increasing issues with computer viruses on hospital medical devices. Problem sources include inconsistent and/or incompatible security measures, as well as outdated operating systems. The Government Accounting Office has sounded the alarm, requesting the FDA to

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Health education information incomprehensible to many; HHS program to rate EHR-linked education materials for “understandability”

Health education materials provided to health care consumers until now have commonly assumed a fairly high level of “health literacy” – a level which, research has shown, makes the materials inaccessible to about 77 million people.  HHS’ new program addressing

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Sharing EHR notes between providers and patients improves care, patient loyalty among other benefits

According to Annals of Internal Medicine, a new study found no disadvantages to health care providers sharing EHR notes with patients. Via Kaiser Health News: Doctors are required by federal law to provide patients with a copy of their medical

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Laptop theft costs Massachusetts provider $1.5 million in HHS settlement

Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Associates (MEEI) will be paying HHS $1.5 million in installments over three years for a 2010 incident.  It is worth noting that OCR also reached a $1.5 million settlement with

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OCR: Health records of over 7 percent of U.S. population breached in past 3 years

Health records of over seven percent of the U.S. population – almost 21 million individuals – have been breached in the past three years, according to OCR. Although it may be somewhat of an apples-to-oranges comparison, it is worth noting

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Health care system mergers slow transition to electronic medical records

The mounting economic challenges and the uncertain regulatory environment ensure that the pace of mergers in the healthcare industry will continue to accelerate, at the same time as the industry is moving into the digital age.  Converting a single health

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HHS advisory panel recommends delaying Stage 2 Meaningful Use until 2014

The HIT Policy Committee, which advises the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT in the Department of Health and Human Services, voted 12-5 to approve a significant delay in requiring providers to meet Stage 2 Meaningful Use until

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OCR adds investigators to boost security rule enforcement

According to Health Data Management, Susan McAndrew, deputy director for privacy at the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (OCR) announced at a recent conference that OCR added investigators to 10 regional offices in order to

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OCR delays enforcement of certain HITECH provisions

In a much-anticipated move, the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) within the Department of Health and Human Services has issued an update regarding delays of certain HITECH provisions, while confirming enforcement of others.  Via OCR press release:       OCR will

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Steve Fox Interviewed on Negotiating EHR Agreements

As if foreshadowing our upcoming webinar on negotiating EHR license agreements in the post-HITECH world, For the Record interviewed our own Steve Fox on this very subject in its February 15, 2010 cover story:       Steve Fox, senior partner and chair

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Timely advice: Begin preparations for “meaningful use” now

Our collaborator and friend James Oakes, a Principal at Health Care Information Consultants, LLC in Baltimore, Md., authored a wise and timely call for action for healthcare providers hoping to capitalize on the incentive payments for meaningful use of certified EHR technology

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CBS News reports on EHR efforts

By popular demand, here is the video of David Pogue’s report on the Obama Administration’s efforts to digitize patient records in the U.S. Watch Video

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EHR Market to reach $1.6BN in 2013

Healthcare IT News reports that a new study projects that the market for electronic health records related equipment and software will reach $1.6 billion in 2013, which is almost three times more than last year’s value.  EHR market was estimated at $575

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This just in: New HHS guidance about securing protected information

From HHS: On April 17, 2009, HHS issued guidance specifying the technologies and methodologies that render protected health information unusable, unreadable, or indecipherable to unauthorized individuals, as required by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act

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Update: Healthcare Informatics Interviews Steve Fox and Ed Shay about the HITECH Act, Parts III and IV

Healthcare Informatics Editor-in-Chief Anthony Guerra recently talked with our own Steve Fox and fellow Post & Schell partner Edward Shay about the substance of the HITECH Act and what this new legislation means for healthcare providers. The interview appears under

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NCVHS issues summary of its hearing on “meaningful use”

The National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics (NCVHS) held a public meeting on April 28-29, 2009 in Washington, DC to help define and clarify the term “meaningful use” with respect to such term’s use under the HITECH Act. NCVHS provided a

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Washington Post examines HIMSS role in securing HIT stimulus funding

The Washington Post provides an interesting behind-the-scenes account of how the funds for electronic health records adoption were included into the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, commonly known as the stimulus bill.  Health Information and Management System Society (HIMSS)

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