As a healthcare provider, your priority is helping patients manage their health. In order to provide top-notch care, you have to establish trust with each and every person who walks into your office. If you develop positive patient relationships, your care plan will benefit from two-way communication, regular appointments and honesty.
But patients aren’t just trusting you with their health; they’re trusting you with their private medical records. When they leave after their appointment, they assume you’re handling their records with the utmost security and privacy. What are you doing to make sure their confidential personal and financial information stays safe in the age of electronic files? Insurance for medical professionals is a must when it comes to protecting your practice.
Learn more about the growing problem of data breaches and what you can do to minimize damage.
The Costs of a Cyber Attack
A recent survey showed that approximately 68 percent of U.S. consumers “would consider leaving their healthcare provider if it was negatively impacted by ransomware,” as Healthcare IT News reports. But 7 out of 10 of these respondents trust their healthcare providers to keep their records safe. That means they’re placing great faith in your online security measures.
Data breaches can happen to organizations of any size. According to HIPAA Journal, over 113 million patient records were exposed in 2015 alone. In 2016, there were 329 breaches of 500 or more patient records; this number doesn’t even include smaller practices and companies. The fallout from such breaches can be widespread for everyone involved.
As you can imagine, patients feel violated after finding out their medical records have been compromised. Many of them will likely be tempted to change healthcare providers. You may face expensive, time-consuming litigation in the aftermath alleging negligence and breach of contract. And, perhaps worst of all, your reputation could suffer for months or years to come.
Creating a Safety Net for Your Practice
Unfortunately, there’s no magical way to stop hackers from doing what they do best. In addition to employing up-to-date security measures, training employees on how to handle sensitive information and staying strictly HIPAA compliant, there are a few helpful things your medical practice can do.
Cyber insurance specifically deals with cyberattacks and the aftermath of such events. In combination with the right tools to defend your business against data breaches ahead of time, this insurance minimizes legal costs and operational impacts on your practice if an unfortunate cyber incident does occur. It can mean the difference between staying in business or hanging up your stethoscope for good.
Any number of unpredictable situations can happen when it comes to the healthcare field; important additions to cyber protection are liability coverage for bodily injury and property insurance to cover your computer systems and medical equipment in the face of cyber-physical risk.
So, there you have it: the very real risks of cyberattacks in the healthcare industry and a few ways you can protect your organization. There’s never been a better time to beef up your electronic security, not to mention your insurance for medical professionals.
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