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Avoiding data breaches in interoperability testing, development

Many hospitals use live patient data for interoperability and application development test bed. That's a potential HIPAA data breach violation. Here's what to do instead.

The test bed is vital to IT administrators in every industry, but especially in health care. Testing application interoperability -- as well as the functionality and reliability of custom apps, or just routine upgrades to existing software -- becomes a life-and-death matter when it involves technology used in patient care.

A recent Ponemon Institute survey, commissioned by data integration firm Informatica Corp., found that many hospitals use live patient data in these test beds, since they want real-world results to their test activities. If that's not a HIPAA violation in itself, it certainly puts a provider at risk of health care data breaches or other violations when the disposition isn't documented. The scariest part? More than three-quarters of respondents indicated they weren't even sure they could detect data breaches if and when they happened. sat down to discuss best policies and procedures for avoiding this common HIPAA trap with three folks from Informatica:

  • Adam Wilson, information lifecycle management business general manager
  • Jay Hill, product management and marketing director
  • Garland Lynn, director of health care solutions

In addition, the speakers provide general tips for health care IT leaders for masking patient data in IT test bed environments, regardless of which vendor they choose.

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Avoiding data breaches in interoperability testing, development

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Let us know what you think about the podcast; email Don Fluckinger, Features Writer.

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