Health Care IT

Risk Management for Healthcare Cloud Hosting

Following a two-year deceleration of cloud growth, the technology again gathered steam in 2015. With the vast majority of healthcare providers now adopting cloud, it’s become critical to consider risk management for this transition. Here is a five-stage plan to see your organization through.

  • Slow-Down & Speed-Up of Cloud in Business
  • Hybrid Cloud and Risk Management in Healthcare
  • Five-Stage Cloud Risk Management for HIT
  • Managing HIT risk with Your cChoice of Cloud Vendor

Slow-Down & Speed-Up of Cloud in Business

In 2013 and 2014, there was a slow-down in the previously breathtaking ascent of cloud hosting. However, last year, the industry accelerated again, with 5.4% more organizations adopting the IT method.

Business generally has been moving to cloud, but healthcare companies have been somewhat more hesitant to implement these systems because of concerns with compliance and security. Nonetheless, 5 of 6 healthcare providers (83%) had cloud in place even back in 2014, according to the Health Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS). Furthermore, Becker’s Healthcare notes in 2016 that “[c]ompared to previous years, providers are more likely to use cloud implementations and leverage mobile and analytics capabilities in the cloud than before.”

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Could Cloud Computing Cure Cancer?

Angelina Jolie used genomic sequencing to learn that she was highly likely to eventually develop breast cancer, allowing her to make an informed decision and get a double mastectomy. However, celebrities aren’t the only ones who can benefit from advanced genetic analysis – which is now much more affordable and accessible thanks to projects such as the Collaborative Cancer Cloud.

  • Angelina Jolie: Survival through Personalized Cancer Data
  • Expediting Healing with the Collaborative Cancer Cloud
  • Spinning Up Your Own Cloud VPS Server

Angelina Jolie: Survival through Personalized Cancer Data

Angelina Jolie was told by her doctors in 2013 that she had a problematic variant of the BRCA1 gene that put her in an extremely high-risk category for breast cancer. In fact, it meant that her likelihood of developing the disease was a whopping 87%. Understanding how very real the threat of cancer was for her simply because of hereditary factors, Jolie opted to get a preventive double mastectomy – which effectively nullified her chances of getting the illness, dropping her to just 5% susceptibility.

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HIPAA Compliant Hosting Hangout with Gene Geiger

Much of the focus on healthcare technology is on its dark side, the potential that the information will be hacked. That’s a reasonable concern, especially given the gigantic exposure of user data at Anthem, which many security experts now believe originated with government-sponsored IT security researchers in China.

Well, here’s the light side: healthcare technology is saving lives – as demonstrated by a recent Information Age article by Bryan Lewis of the Virginia Bioinformatics Institute (VBI): “How Big Data is Beating Ebola”. VBI is a firm that specializes in computational epidemiology, which essentially means that they study data related to epidemics to better control the spread of disease and determine the degree of success achieved by public health efforts.

In order to properly understand how the disease might spread, VBI designed a virtual model containing populations that were each assigned adjustable characteristics. The virtual geographic environment was fed information including race, sex, age, typical family arrangements, travel between different areas, and gatherings – essentially a predictive analytic model on a worldwide scale.

The synthetic data “was created in such a way that it mirrored actual census, social, transit and telecommunications data patterns from the targeted population,” explained Lewis.

The resultant sophisticated system allowed VBI to help improve the response to the disease and minimize its death toll, which exceeded 9000 as of January 2015.

While the Anthem hack reminds us that technology with patient data must be incredibly secure, the positive impact of computing on healthcare is truly remarkable. We must build systems that improve the effectiveness of healthcare while never forgetting the security concerns when handling protected health information (PHI).

The second episode of our Google Hangout on Air (HOA) series (see the above video), featured Gene Geiger, one of the founding partners of security and compliance firm A-lign. We spoke with Geiger about the general security climate and compliance with the Healthcare insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).  Atlantic.Net offers a full lineup of SSD Cloud Servers that fully support our full line of HIPPA Compliant Servers.

By Moazzam Adnan

Q & A: HIPAA Compliant Report Writer Control System

Sam Guiliano July 31, 2015 by under Healthcare IT 0 Comments

Since we focus so much on the healthcare industry, we regularly receive questions from HIPAA covered entities and their tech partners looking for compliant hosting services. We were recently contacted by a customer interested in encrypted storage, remote access, Web (Apache) and DB (MySQL) servers for a HIPAA-compliant report writer control system (RWCS).

Here is an excerpt of our interaction, sourced from the real transcripts. (Note: Anonymity is maintained, and any intellectual property or other sensitive details are omitted.)

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Do I Need to Be HIPAA Compliant?

Adnan Raja July 24, 2015 by under Healthcare IT 0 Comments
  • Who Needs to Be Compliant?
  • The Role of the Healthcare Clearinghouse
  • Interviewing Business Associates
  • Making Strong HIPAA Choices

Who needs to Be Compliant?

You need to be compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act if you are a covered entity or business associate. Business associates are a catch-all group that includes any company performing a service for covered entities that exposes it to protected health information (electronic health records or other data). Covered entities include health care providers, health care plans, and health care clearinghouses.

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How to Comply with HIPAA

Sam Guiliano July 23, 2015 by under Healthcare IT 0 Comments

How do you comply with the Health insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)? This article covers the four basic elements of the regulations. It also discusses myths associated with the basic compliance testing method, security risk analysis – most notably that a HIPAA risk analysis checklist is insufficient for compliance.

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How to Protect Privacy While Maintaining HIPPA Complaince

Sam Guiliano July 15, 2015 by under Healthcare IT 0 Comments

There are plenty of checklists and guidebooks out there related to HIPAA compliance. However, it helps to go to the source to see what specific HIPAA controls are necessary to safeguard protected health information. Here are specific details on how to follow the Security Rule, as indicated directly by HHS guidelines:

  • Basic Guidelines
  • Vulnerability Assessments
  • Administrative HIPAA Controls
  • Physical HIPAA Controls
  • Technical HIPAA Controls
  • The Role of Business Associates

Basic Guidelines

The Security Rule states that healthcare organizations must properly protect ePHI using reasonable administrative, technical, and physical HIPAA safeguards.

The following must be achieved:

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How Do I Test My HIPAA Compliance?

Adnan Raja July 14, 2015 by under Healthcare IT 0 Comments

We all want simplicity, but there’s no getting around the fact that compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 is complicated. However, you can use a couple of checklists along with penetration testing of your system to verify that you have hit all the bases.

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