HIPAA Compliant Hosting

HIPAA Overview and Four Questions for Web Hosts About Compliance

Sam Guiliano November 6, 2013 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

For those in healthcare IT, HIPAA has been a major concern since it was passed in 1996. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act has two main sections – Title I and Title II. Title I is about portability. In a nutshell, it deals with individual rights related to health insurance, especially group health insurance when a person is laid off or switching employers.

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More Healthcare Organizations are Embracing Cloud Computing

Adnan Raja October 3, 2013 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

As we all know very well by now, A Cloud Server relies on the concept of economies of scale to provide massive resources for storage and computing power to any and all users who sign up for such services. Google’s multitude of services, from Gmail to Hangout, are examples of extremely popular cloud-based applications.

Cloud technology is continuously evolving and improving as new products are released onto the market, but the health information technology industry has already greatly benefited from cloud solutions. In what ways has the healthcare industry used cloud solutions? How will cloud technologies continue to transform the healthcare industry over the coming years?

Resiliency in data security.

According to Greg Arnette, Chief Technical Officer (CTO) at Sonian, a reputable cloud solution provider, “The cloud infrastructure offers durability and up-time that far exceed what any hospital’s IT department could offer.”

Why is the cloud so much more durable and resilient than in-house architecture? Large cloud service providers have both the monetary and physical resources to build large and secure redundant data centers that place backup, data resiliency and uptime as main priorities.

Since these resources are so powerful and are available in such large quantities, cloud solutions can be extremely budget-friendly: cloud storage can start at as little as 10 cents a month, even for the most premiere services.

Cloud Hosting service providers typically strive for a higher bar of excellence when compared to traditional hosting providers since the technology is newer; this only benefits you as a customer.

Resiliency in privacy.

Obviously, privacy within the healthcare industry is of upmost importance. More often than not, sensitive information in a hospital’s storage room is often separated from the public (and prying eyes) by just a simple door lock.

When data is located in a cloud server, it is a completely encrypted blob that not even the cloud provider has direct access to. Additionally, cloud providers are required to adhere to strict industry privacy standards such as those outlined in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).

“The levels of security [in a cloud environment] are much higher than what you see in a local IT department,” says Arnette.

Rapid innovation.

Cloud customers can upgrade or downgrade the services they receive with just a few clicks, with minimal or no interruption to service and at an affordable cost.

Cloud technologies are also evolving at a surprisingly rapid pace. When discussing Amazon’s S3 cloud service, Arnette explains, “In the first five years [of its service] there were ten price drops and fifty new major features. In the last year there were ten price drops and 75 new features.”

Before the cloud was introduced, healthcare providers would be hassled by being forced to install and implement new software on an unforeseeable basis. Now, all they have to do is upgrade with each new major release, which occurs about every two or so years.

Cloud providers are continuously beefing up data processes and implementing new products to improve computing power, thus freeing up in-house IT staff to work on routine maintenance and basic administration.

Mobile applications. 

We are living in an age where practically anything we do or see is powered by mobile applications. And, according to Arnette, “Every great mobile application is backed by some cloud infrastructure.”

When they store all of their data and computing power within the cloud, healthcare providers have the ability to access that information anywhere they need to.

By transitioning to a cloud service, healthcare providers will witness greater speed and access to information, ultimately improving the patient’s overall experience and optimizing productivity.

Some major healthcare providers are even developing their own mobile applications to ease patient’s experience with their services. These applications now allow you to check emergency room waiting times, schedule appointments with your general practitioner and even analyze the severity of your symptoms to predict the necessity of an appointment with your doctor.

Developing industry trends.

The ultimate goal of cloud providers is to integrate their products and services into existing architecture, eventually replacing these architectures altogether and empower more people and systems in the long-term.

“Cloud service providers have been good about pushing open formats instead of closed formats, meaning that the structures and file systems employed are open and easily adaptable to,” says Arnette. This makes adopting cloud technologies as a replacement for existing ones much easier, more efficient and surprisingly cheaper.

Conclusion.

It just makes sense to transition to cloud-based services, especially for those within the healthcare industry. The cloud enables them to remove current inefficiencies in their IT infrastructure, improve collaboration among employees, reform the patient experience and increment their IT budget, while mainting it all on a HIPPA Compliant Hosting company.

If you are a healthcare provider and you are curious to learn more about how the cloud can help improve your current practices, give Atlantic.Net a call today.

 


Security Concerns for HIPAA Data

Glenn September 21, 2012 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

Security Concerns for HIPAA DataThe Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was enacted in 1996 to address security and privacy concerns with health data.  The act identifies policies, procedures, and guidelines for maintaining the privacy and security of individually identifiable health information.  These standards are intended to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the United States health care system by encouraging the use of electronic data transactions.

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Cloud Hosting Should Expect Growth in the Health Care Industry According to a Recent Report

Joel August 24, 2012 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

As a whole, the healthcare industry is very conscientious about data privacy and problems with making IT systems inter-operable have played a major part in delaying the adoption and growth of cloud computing in the industry.  Health care data has specific requirements regarding security, confidentiality, availability to authorized users, reversibility of data, and long-term preservation.  Regulations such as the electronic health record guidelines on meaningful use and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) have stunted public cloud adoption in this industry.

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Cloud Storage Encryption & Healthcare Data Security

Glenn July 19, 2012 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

For a long time, data security has been a major need in the healthcare industry, but as Cloud hosting gains more and more traction, healthcare providers are starting to take advantage of it to keep their data secure.  As a whole, the healthcare industry is very conscientious about data privacy and some of these issues can be addressed through cloud encryption and cloud key management.

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Avoiding Compliance Issues when Moving to Cloud Hosting

When companies plan to move their existing IT services to a private cloud, security and compliance issues can seem a bit daunting.  However, a move to the right cloud-based system with a respectable Cloud Hosting provider could actually reduce your compliance exposure.  A private cloud does not have a public address and is connected directly into your existing corporate network via a secure connection, such as a VPN (Virtual Private Network).  Therefore, only people inside your corporate network can access those services.

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Healthcare IT – A Guide to the Cloud & Managed Server Hosting

Virtualization has created new possibilities and opportunities for the health care segment of technology. Health care IT Professionals specializing in virtualization technologies are now finding more attractive and lucrative opportunities, especially with the new Health Care Reform and health care IT initiatives introduced by the new Administration.
Virtualization is the technology behind cloud computing and it makes such a pool of network resources a genuine possibility.

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Electronic Medical Records Made Easy With Managed Hosting

Glenn June 1, 2010 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

The complexity of our health care system has grown over the years making it more difficult for practitioners to stay informed about their patients health histories. Electronic Medical Records will help solve this problem. This method reduces the amount of paperwork involved in the process; while at the same time increasing access to these records by making them available electronically. EMR/EHR systems enable the practitioner to view a patient’s complete health event summary, historical reports and previous treatment records. This has resulted in an enormous gain in productivity in practices staffed with multiple physicians. The advantages are also evident in regard to patients with multiple aliments and in emergency medical situations.

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Electronic Medical Records in a Data Center Environment

Glenn May 25, 2010 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

Physicians today are faced with many obstacles due to recent regulations created by Health Care Reform. Some practitioners are asking themselves, “How do I provide outstanding quality health care in the face of an increasingly complex regulatory system? Where am I going to find the time and resources to implement an EMR system?” Many doctors are in the precarious position of having to manage and troubleshoot complex IT, EMR and billing systems. Keeping up to date with the latest HIPAA Compliant Hosting and HITECH compliance and security requirements is expensive, time consuming, and difficult.

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HIMSS Conference- A fresh Prospective on Healthcare IT

Glenn March 6, 2010 by under HIPAA Compliant Hosting 0 Comments

With the passage of Healthcare Reform by Congress, there is a lot of talk about healthcare in the IT business community.  Healthcare already accounts for about $2 trillion in federal spending each year; almost one out of every seven dollars spent in the U.S is related to healthcare.  It looks as if billions more will be funneled into the healthcare IT segment, thanks to the new federal initiatives that require health care providers to maintain medical records electronically.  This explains why almost every technology vendor out there is evaluating and exploring opportunities within the health care sector.

We sent Sam G. to the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society Expo (HIMSS) in Atlanta, Georgia earlier this month to do some investigating.

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