Nearly half of consumers believe their personal health information is more secure on their personal electronic devices – smartphones, laptops and tablets – than it is on their health care providers’ computer systems.
This high level of mistrust in health entities’ handling of personal data is among the findings of a recent survey of 1,000 consumers by the cybersecurity firm Morphisec. Benjamin Harris of HealthcareITNews reported on the survey. Continue reading
Amazon’s recent announcement that its cloud-based voice service Alexa can support health care entities that are subject to the HIPAA federal patient privacy law offers some interesting story ideas for reporters.
The Alexa Healthcare Skills Kit program is invite-only. So far Amazon announced the launch of six Alexa skills built by health care entities, including Boston Children’s Hospital, Livongo, Providence Health and Services and Cigna. (You can see the full list of players and their projects at this Amazon blog post.) Continue reading
Privacy laws, such as HIPAA, are the bane of health journalism. No matter how fervently you wish to preserve patient privacy, the legal protections often stand between you and a great story.
Unless you know the ways around them.
ProPublica’s Annie Waldman is an expert in overcoming or sidestepping privacy barriers. Continue reading
Since Sunday’s horrific shooting in Orlando that killed 49 people and injured 53 patrons at the Pulse night club, journalists have been asking whether the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) limits what hospital administrators can say about a patient’s condition.
One source of confusion was a statement made by Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer after the June 12 attack. Continue reading
Charles Ornstein, a senior reporter at ProPublica, kicked off a Health Journalism 2016 session about the federal government’s health privacy rule with several stories of privacy breaches:
- A woman was watching television at night when she came upon footage documenting her husband’s death. She had never been contacted for permission.
- A doctor hired a private investigator to investigate a patient.
- A woman went online and found that a website had made public some 6,000 paternity cases.
These privacy breaches, Ornstein said, can be “very, very harmful” to individuals. Continue reading