A global leader and advisory organization, HIMSS has successfully incorporated information and technology to consistently improvise healthcare. Through our association with HIMSS, we have been exposed to various avenues of healthcare leadership and engaged in building a like-minded community. This community spans over 70,000 members, 600 corporates and 450 organizations.
Through our association with this community, during our consecutive attendances at the conference, we have participated and viewed several digital innovations that are aimed at raising the quality of healthcare. It is an exclusive opportunity to gain access to the expertise of various specialists in the healthcare and information technology sectors. Through the various arrangements of the conference, our insight has deepened towards leveraging assets, operational excellence and clinic studies. The tandem is further enhanced through the use of key innovations and technologies that automate and expedite healthcare functions. Below is a list of the key takeaways from our attendance at the conference.
Healthcare is a subject that is often considered private and information related to it carries a high amount of sensitivity. This is because every individual considers their healthcare information to be private and expect the caregivers to exercise sensitivity toward the subject. According to a recent report by HIMSS titled, “Patient Portal Identity Proofing and Authentication”, “The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has a patient-centric focus that embraces and empowers patients and families to participate in managing their care. To make this process more efficient and secure, people/patients will also need to validate who they are electronically, to gain online access to their protected data and provide informed authorization to share their PHI or to delegate who can view their confidential health information.”
In certain cases, patients prefer to remain anonymous due to the sensitivity involved with the nature of the illness. The same report further states, “In healthcare, if a patient wishes to have anonymity so that their medical records cannot be associated with their true identity except in extraordinary circumstances, they may be assigned a pseudonym28 and a multifactor authentication mechanism to help protect the privacy and confidentiality of their records. This authentication mechanism is identical to that issued to a fully identity proofed patient, so no special provisions need to be made to maintain the anonymity. The difference resides in the limitation that such an authenticated digital identity can only be relied upon by the originating organization, whereas a fully proofed identity could be used across organizations, each of which have carried out the appropriate level of identity proofing and authentication.”
Listed below are the challenges related to healthcare sensitivity:
During our attendance at HIMSS, we have witnessed immeasurable growth in the development and technological advancements of the healthcare sector. Even with all these advancements, healthcare cybersecurity is gradually improving, but there are still gaps that need to be addressed. According to a report at HIMSS titled, “2017 – A Year in Review of Cybersecurity Developments: Lessons Learned in Healthcare and Beyond”, “It is likely that we will see the rise of offensive cyber maneuvers, including the use of cyber weapons (wiper malware and otherwise), by nation state, non-state, and other actors in 2018 (and beyond). But, one does not need to be a sophisticated cyber-attacker to access and use such technology. Indeed, many of these resources are easy to use and hiding in plain sight.”
Healthcare providers are eager to embrace technological innovations, but they need to be cognizant about the risks involved in the adoption of these technologies. The report further adds, “Just about every organization has a website, and web technology is always changing. But, as we have noted previously in this blog post, website security is not something that everyone has mastered. Thus, while entities may patch their back-office systems and in-house IT infrastructure, their websites (and web technology) may be ignored. Web applications may have significant vulnerabilities such as directory traversals (Vol. 15, item no. 1 in Threats, Vulnerabilities, and Mitigation Information), which may result in unauthorized disclosure of potentially sensitive files. In addition, if you have a back-end database which your web application can query, you need to keep in mind problems such as, but not limited to, SQL injection vulnerabilities (Vol. 15, item no. 2 in Threats, Vulnerabilities, and Mitigation Information).”
Listed below are the challenges related to healthcare cybersecurity:
Artificial Intelligence has made its entry into the healthcare sector with a bang. However, it still has a long way to go. With the introduction of Machine Learning (ML), AI is rapidly creating a mark within the industry, but aligning the technologies with the specific requirements of healthcare, caregivers and patients is still in its developmental stage.
The road ahead seems promising. Referring to AI at HIMSS, PeriGen CEO Matthew Sappern says, “”I think it does things that are really imperative that are not necessarily what nurses can do. These tools are not so great where reasoning and empathy are required. You teach them to do something, and they will do it over and over and over again, period. They’re good tools to provide perspective, but it’s all about the provider or nurse who is making sense of that information.”
Further, according to Christina Caraballo, director, Audacious Inquiry; a HIMSS Interoperability and HIE Community member, “AI is game changing as we make healthcare more personalized and accessible. AI processes data and provides actionable insights to better understand and respond to healthcare needs – health-related social needs like transportation and new approaches like virtual visits.”
Related to an event at HIMSS titled, “Machine Learning and AI for Healthcare”, it was said, “Machine learning and artificial Intelligence in healthcare is happening. But this next-generation technology is still very much in its infancy, and with it come big challenges with technology, terminology, and, perhaps most daunting, how to introduce this potential transformative solution into existing healthcare workflows.”
Listed below are the challenges related to AI in healthcare:
Riken Shah is the CEO of OSP. He is a tech enthusiast, healthcare innovation specialist, and avid reader. With over a decade of experience, Riken has helped healthcare companies to be more productive and successful.
An EHR-integrated remote health platform to seamlessly connect patients to the providers and approved by HIPAA and HL7 standards.