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From The CriticsReviewer: LouAnn Schraffenberger, MBA, RHIA, CCS, CCS-P(Advocate Health Care)
Description: As more health records and patient information are stored in information technology systems, healthcare providers are challenged to be more conscious of the public's demand for privacy and to meet the new federal privacy rules. In this book the author presents solutions to the more common risks to health privacy.
Purpose: The author summarizes some of the existing resources to help providers avoid breaches in confidentiality in all healthcare settings. Her intent is to help build systems designed to protect confidential patient/resident/client information entrusted to the healthcare provider during healthcare services. In addition she examines the impact of information technology on the access of patient information.
Audience: The intended audience includes health information managers, information technology managers, risk managers, and healthcare administrators. The author is an attorney specializing in healthcare risk management issues. She is also a registered health information administrator and author who is recognized for her expertise and leadership in promoting confidentiality of health information.
Features: In Chapter 1 she examines the public's growing concern for privacy. In Chapter 2 she reviews the laws, regulations, ethical codes, and case law that provide the legal foundation to protect patient information. In Chapter 3 she discusses common breaches of confidentiality, and in Chapter 4 she provides guidelines for developing policies and procedures to protect patient information. She focuses Chapter 5 on the need for employee and medical staff continuing education concerning privacy and confidentiality, and in Chapter 6 she addresses the emerging issues and technologies that will impact confidentiality. The appendix contains resources that can improve an organization's ability to protect patient confidentiality.
Assessment: This book is a "must-read" for all healthcare managers who are (or should be) developing policies, procedures, and systems to protect private information. Practical, valuable information is included to help the reader examine the security and confidentiality of their manual and electronic information systems. Protecting patient information is every healthcare provider's job. With this book the author will help get that important job done.