Current Events Healthcare IT

Do we need to go back to PHRs?

There has been lots of public outcry for integrated, interoperable electronic health records (EHR).  Having EHRs silos makes it difficult for physicians, hospitals and other providers to share information with one another and with patients.  However, there is one benefit of these silos; any data breach will be somewhat contained.

Are data breaches of EMRs a problem.  A recent hacker attack on a hospital system clearly shows the answer is yes.

Community Health Systems Inc, one of the biggest U.S. hospital groups, said on Monday it was the victim of a cyber attack from China, resulting in the theft of Social Security numbers and other personal data belonging to 4.5 million patients.

That would make the attack the largest of its type involving patient information since a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website started tracking such breaches in 2009.

It almost (I said almost) makes you yearn for the days of PHRs (paper health records).

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