By: Brian Yarnell, President and Co-Founder Bluestream Health
Zoombombing, Weak Encryption, Data Mistakenly Routed to China, Oh My…
If you’ve been reading the news the past two weeks, no doubt you’ve been watching the slow-motion train wreck as people start to realize that wildly popular videoconferencing platforms were never designed for security and privacy. While security may not be critical when you’re ‘participating’ in your Monday-morning team Zoom session or when you’re debating the merits of higher education with your in-laws on Facetime, buttoned-down security is critical when your children are on a call or when you doctor is talking about your health issues.
We designed Bluestream from the ground-up to be the most secure platform available, period. All communications use true end-to-end encryption and we can partition data by country, whitelist client IP addresses, integrate with enterprise Single Sign On (SSO) and easily meet any enterprise security/compliance policy you have. There’s a reason the largest health systems and retailers in the country trust us to deliver for their patients and customers.
High Security Standards Shouldn’t Equal High Barriers to Adoption
In the next few days, you’re going to see changes come to the videoconferencing platforms that you’re used to using. Those platforms are going to scramble to ramp -up security and privacy. In the process, they are going to create additional complexity around the process of launching a session between a patient and provider.
We firmly believe that connecting to a healthcare provider should be one click (well, maybe two with an integrated consent form). If your virtual care platform can’t provide healthcare-grade security and privacy while making it dead-simple for providers and patients to connect, give us a call—your patients will thank you.
With most healthcare providers scrambling to provide any virtual care in light of the COVID-19 crisis, it’s tempting to check the “telehealth” box and move on. Please listen carefully to this part: videoconferencing is not telehealth. It never has been, and it never will be. Any real telehealth solution (especially in time of crisis) needs to deliver at massive scale with automated, intelligent workflows that deliver clinical value across the care continuum.
A Day of Reckoning is Coming
Remember when the government waived HIPAA requirements for virtual visits? There is a day coming in the not-too-distant future when those same public servants will unwaive HIPAA requirements for virtual visits. The news coming out about security holes in videoconferencing platforms should be a serious wakeup call.
Even if those security holes get plugged before HIPAA-compliant platforms are once-again required, most organizations will face massively increased awareness and demand for virtual care and remain saddled with rigid, expensive and clunky workflows. The genie is not going back in the bottle.
Bluestream wrote the playbook on delivering virtual care with complex, clinical workflows in a HIPAA-compliant environment. Give us a call; we’re here to help.