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Cyber Security in Healthcare: What should you know before launching an Identity Security Program

The biggest challenge that Healthcare organizations are facing today is understanding how to bring down clinician friction while increasing their ability to meet an expeditiously changing security landscape. The problem arises when they lose great clinical staff because they are not enabled with the right access they need to care for patients. 

What makes identity security challenging for healthcare providers?

Healthcare organizations have multiple challenges that increase the risks associated with identities and also the access that identities have across the organization. Firstly, let us consider the user population. They have complex and dynamic identity populations, that include clinical/contracted staff, medical/nursing students, physicians, volunteers, and other identity types.

The hybrid nature boosts an additional level of cybersecurity risk. There is constant financial pressure on the health systems focussing on patient care. The ongoing challenge is balancing cybersecurity and clinical care. Considering the potential friction between security and clinicians must be useful.

When the pandemic struck, they adjusted their business models rapidly to include remote workforce strategies. They were frequently onboarding and transferring many clinicians to address critical patient needs without proper security tools and processes to effectively and securely manage them.

What considerations should healthcare organizations have as they launch an identity security program?

Specifically, consider the following:

  • Does the identity security platform leverage a standards-based approach built upon the APIs that are published and approved by the clinical application? Not all, but many core clinical application providers have formal vendor developer programs which have a certain level of formal review and approval processes. We advise our customers to avoid custom integrations that are not based on a standards-based approach.
  • Include the HR, Credentialling, Clinical Care Leadership, Learning Management, and clinical application teams as a part of the design and deployment of the identity program. 
  • Identify an identity security platform that is based on the concepts of dynamic role modeling so that it leverages data science vs static “moment in time” role modeling.  The static role modeling approach shall no longer keep pace with business changes across the healthcare industry.

Here at 1Trooper, we constantly encourage our customers to examine several areas across, security posture, clinician satisfaction, operational outcomes, entitlement management, identifying opportunities for transformation & improvement of business processes, and lastly, how an identity security program accelerates alignment to security frameworks such as Zero Trust (NIST/HITRUST).

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