July 2016

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Brian Sankarsingh

As more and more physicians move their practices to a full electronic medical record the critical need to balance Security, Privacy and Accessibility to the medical record is magnified.

What is equally important to recognize is that the size of the practice does not diminish this. Whether the practice consists of a single physician or the multi-disciplinary teams at a Community Health Centre, the right balance of security, privacy and accessibility must be struck.

This is a challenge that will not disappear with time. With the province's plan to develop an electronic health record, the need to build an awareness of Security and Privacy into the system's design (from Practice to Province) is essential to its success.

Victor Beitner CISSP

This should not have happend. If basic security protocals were in place, like a FIPS 140-2 Level 3 compliant USB device were used for encryption, the lost USB key would only be a chunk of metal in an unauthorized users hands.

Brian Sankarsingh

Victor, I wholeheartedly agree with your statement. However, the reality is this: Physicians are not Information Technology people, and so this entire process has to be taken from an educational approach. We dangle and entice them with the prospect of the Electronic Medical Record but as eHealth leaders we cannot neglect to educate them on all aspects of electronic medical record adoption. This includes the change in how the information is protected. Many clinicians ordinarily, will never give thought to the fact that protecting the paper medical record and protecting the electronic medical record are two entirely different things.

Alan Brookstone

One of our readers suggests that users consider a free open source application called TrueCrypt which can encrypt any drive. This open source software will work in Windows, Mac, and Linux and is quite user friendly. URL - http://www.truecrypt.org/

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