Challenges and Concerns Regarding The Security of Healthcare Information example

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Challenges and Concerns Regarding The Security of Healthcare Information

Electronic Health Record(EHR) is a database in which patients' treatment details are stored; it consists of digital media and health records. Electronic Health Record systems are now being implemented in many developed countries, since they improve the quality of the health care, they are cost-effective compared to alternative solutions, and they contribute greatly to health research all over the world(Ozair & Aggarwal, 2015). However, EHR is a very multifaceted issue, which includes ethical, legal and public concerns, even though it a necessary asset for creating a more healthy society(Ozair & Aggarwal, 2015). A lot of research has been done and is now in progress to resolve its inherent contradictions, that hamper its full-scale implementation in national health care systems, and extract the maximum benefit out of it, without violating patients' rights. The following paragraphs will describe the major challenges and concerns regarding EHRs and explore the prospects for effective electronic health information exchange.

EHRs save information about patients' health problems, which is no doubt a very personal matter. However, in reality healthcare information is more varied and complex, and it can be accessed, whether legally or illicitly, by many entities. And this is where the concerns of patients' privacy arise from. On the one hand, EHR specialists have to make sure that the information collected is valid. As a result, a lot private details are stored in virtual databases. However convenient the computerization can be, it proves to be a mixed blessing when security issues arise; building databases facilitates access to health care for both patients and medical practitioners, yet it increases significantly the risks of security breaches and, consequently, the disclosure of confidential information. Even though data breaches can happen accidentally or due to illegal actions, they compromise patients' privacy equally. On the other hand, this information is not simply stored, but distributed among healthcare organizations, insurance companies, etc. This leads to another problem: once the information is scattered across different organizations, the risks for misuse of personal data increases exponentially. Database entries, containing phone numbers, addresses, and e-mails become the …

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