Within the health area, it is mandatory, including by law, that there is confidentiality on the part of health professionals about the data of their patients. Although the medical record is in the professional's possession, it belongs to the patient, and your data must not be disclosed without your permission.
Even if the medical record belongs to the patient, by law, hospitals and clinics are responsible for preserving any document that concerns the diseases, treatments, and exams. The objective is to ensure that this information is available whenever it is requested. In some countries like Brazil, the law states that health professionals keep all medical records for at least 20 years.
Before we continue, we need to know: Do you already use medical software to perform your consultations at the clinic? We invite you to get to know Ninsaúde Apolo, online software that can be used on a tablet, smartphone, or in the traditional way, on computers. Learn more on our website apolo.app.
Although clinics and hospitals are safe places, there is an infinity of loopholes that, theoretically, would allow patient data to be exposed more easily. Therefore, we have separated some tips so that you can follow and keep your patient's data in complete secrecy, thus contributing to the good reputation of your clinic.
A medical record must contain information, and among them are patient identification protocol (equivalent to data such as full name and date of birth), anamnesis, medical evolution, therapeutic plan, reports, prescriptions, among others. For many years, the way used to prepare a medical record was through paper. During or after the consultation, the health professional entered all the information collected from the patient in the paper record, and soon afterward, this document should be safely archived.
The fact is that this type of medical record has many disadvantages, and most of them concern precisely the confidentiality of information. First, let's talk about your storage. As the number of calls increases, the space to store documents decreases, and in some cases, there may be a need to find an extra place to store them. However, the idea is to leave all medical records in the same place, as this prevents any of them from getting lost and falling into unauthorized hands.
With physical records being kept in archives, another downside is that they can be handled by anyone who has access to their storage location. This means that if you keep the charts in a room that is not locked, or in a locker that is open to many people, the confidentiality of this information is also at risk.
For these and other reasons, the electronic medical record has been the best alternative for health professionals and clinics who want to maintain total confidentiality of their patient's information. In addition to the issue of confidentiality, the electronic medical record also brings more security in several aspects, mainly in the matter of handling and storage using little space.
A secure electronic medical record is usually embedded in management software for clinics, along with other features that are used by the entire clinic. There are software that are installed, but for safety and practicality reasons, it is best to use online software, that are accessed through an internet browser and their data are all stored in the cloud, thus having much more space.
Despite the various features (schedule, finance, marketing, among others), the software brings much more security in terms of confidentiality, because each person who uses this software must have unique user registration and a password to access it.
This registration must be done by the clinic administrator, and it can also lock some system screens for different levels of users who will use it. Therefore, the user who takes care of the financial part will not have access to medical records, for example.
In some software, such as Ninsaúde Apolo, this type of screen restriction is already automatic, this is because the user who does not have a health professional license within the system, will only have access to the appointment history, therefore, the patient's medical records are restricted only to health professionals. In this sense, only users who have such a license can access the patient evolution screen and enter information in their medical records, that is, only health professionals.
It is worth mentioning that safe medical software must also meet the requirements and standards established by the HIPAA - Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. In this sense, we can say that Ninsaúde Apolo has its features in full compliance with this law. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 provides for the processing of personal data, including in digital media, by an individual or a legal entity governed by public or private law, intending to protect the fundamental rights of freedom and privacy and the free development of the personality of the natural person.
For more details on the subject, check out our article on HIPAA and Ninsaúde Apolo.
For greater security, our system uses data encryption, which is nothing more than a process that seeks to eliminate the chances of third parties gaining access to system data, and to top it off, the master key is changed regularly. In addition, Ninsaúde Apolo uses more than 30 data centers throughout South America, North America, Europe, Asia, and the Pacific, and with this distribution, we absorb distributed attacks.
A secure software must also contain some certifications. Our infrastructure is certified in compliance with various standards and controls, in addition to undergoing independent third-party audits to test protection, data privacy, and security. In addition, we work with end-to-end security and Grade A quality encryption, which protects data in transit from the main vulnerabilities of the internet.
Now that you know how to protect your patients' data, your clinic or office can be more secure, especially if you choose to use Ninsaúde Apolo. If you are not yet a user of the software, contact us through the Apolo.app website and learn more.