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Wednesday, September 5, 2007

HIPAA Security for Wireless Networks (Ebook)

By NetMotion Wireless for ITtoolbox Wireless

Securing data in a health care setting is a daunting task. Although most facilities contain up-to-date
medical technology, many have antiquated communication networks lacking the security and
encryption required to protect patient information. The physical structures of hospitals make it
difficult or even impossible to add wiring for adequate networking, which is why many IT departments
have opted for a wireless network. Implementing a wireless LAN can be both more costeffective
and less problematic then implementing a wireline network, but they are not without their
challenges. Security risks exist and connectivity is a concern while roaming through buildings that
contain elevators, radiology room shielding, or other physical structures that “break” wireless
network sessions.
Under the mandated provisions of the Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act (HIPAA),
IT managers now have a timeline for implementing government-legislated security and privacy
measures to protect patient data. Although HIPAA may seem burdensome, it benefits caregiver
organizations by creating a proactive measure for managing and maintaining reasonable security
safeguards and protecting patient data from unauthorized users.

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