Essay On Administrative Ethics
“No Encryption Standards Raises Healthcare Privacy Questions”
Description of the Issue and Its Impact on the Population
In the article, published by the Associated Press, the major issue discussed is lack of encryption standards, with specific regard to Electronic Health Data. It indicates the 1990 Laws that do not require health care service providers to encrypt medical data and the concerns it has raised among different stakeholders such as; Anthem, an Insurance Company. Additionally, the article describes the loopholes existing in Privacy Laws like the HIPPA, which requires medical service providers to encrypt medical data, but do not make it mandatory, thus leading to vulnerability to cyber attacks. The other main issue covered in the article is the concern of the general public in relation to encryption of medical records. It asserts that lack of proper and clear laws regarding encryption of electronic medical data has undermined public confidence concerning the privacy of their health information.
The concerns of associated stakeholders such as David Kibbe, the Chief Executive Officer of DirectTrust, Senate Health, Labor, Education and Pension Committee are also discussed in the article, indicating their advocacy towards improving medical information security and privacy by improving HIPPA and other medical privacy policies.
The information provided in the article has a major impact on the general populace. It elaborates the challenges faced in regard to management and control of electronic health care information. That is, it discusses the loopholes existing in the current laws that guide the management of electronic health data and the various perspectives that have been offered to solve these challenges. It informs the general population regarding these challenges and the specific efforts implemented by stakeholders to solve them.
Arguments used in the Article to Support Proposed Solutions
The other solution provided to prevent cyber attack of electronic data is encryption in a manner that even authorized users are limited in information they can access at one time. This solution is proposed by Martin Walter, the Senior Director at RedSeal Network Company. He argues that such modes of encryption create a challenge for outside users to have access to the entire electronic health record/information.
According to Nicolas Terry, a Law Professor at the Indiana University, incidences of cyber attack can be reduced through voluntary encryption in a manner that all electronic health records are encrypted. He believes that the one-size-fits all approach has failed and health service providers should focus on an end-to-end encryption. However, he argues that in case the voluntary end-to-end encryption approach fails, the United States, Health and Human Services (HHS), should make encryption of electronic health data mandatory.
Ethical and Legal Issues Reported for the Administrative Issue
One of the ethical issue mentioned in the article is regard to administration is the leakage of electronic health record that occurred in Anthem Insurance Company. This is major leak that affected approximately 80 million people and is attributed to the failure of the company to encrypt all the electronic data of their clients. Additionally, the article describes an ethical issue associated with the responsibility of health care service providers to ensure that their clients’ electronic health data are prevented from unauthorized disclosure and improper access. On the other hand, legal issues such as; the HIPPA, HITECH among others, are mentioned as important tools that can be improved and implemented to ensure that the privacy of electronic health data is properly managed and controlled.
Managerial Responsibilities Related to Administrative Ethical Issues
One of the managerial responsibilities mentioned in the article that is related to the ethical issues discussed is failure of the Anthem Insurance Company to encrypt their client’s electronic health records. This led to a major cyber attack that affected approximately 80 million of their registered clients. However, in order to reduce occurrence of similar challenges in future, the article describes three major propositions that have been offered by the concerned stakeholders. One of these propositions is a review and improvement of HIPPA in a manner that in provides a comprehensive encryption of EHR. Additionally, the article highlights the proposition of a University Professor; Nicolas Terry that indicates the HHS should make encryption of Electronic Health Records compulsory among all service providers. Nicolas also suggests that health service providers should apply an end-to-end approach, whereby all electronic health records are encrypted.
Associated Press. (n.d.). No encryption standard raises healthcare privacy questions. Retrieved February 9, 2015, from http://www.modernhealthcare.com/article/20150207/NEWS/302079937?cachebust=RMSM