The Security Scrutinizer with Howard Anderson

Good Privacy Policy Good for Marketing

Survey: Policies Can Affect Hospital Choice

We know that bad publicity about breaches has the potential to hurt a healthcare provider's business. But can good privacy and security procedures actually help business? A new survey seems to suggest just that.

Some 30 percent of consumers say that if a hospital had clear privacy and security policies, that would sway them to select one hospital over another, if cost, quality and access were equal. That's according to a new survey of 1,000 consumers for PricewaterhouseCoopers' PwC Health Research Institute. By comparison, only 17 percent said the use of electronic health records would sway them.

Some 30 percent of consumers say that if a hospital had clear privacy and security policies, that would sway them to select one hospital over another. 

The survey also found that 60 percent of consumers would feel comfortable having their health data shared among healthcare organizations to improve the coordination of their own care. That finding should be somewhat encouraging to those participating in health information exchanges.

So make sure your patients are aware of all the steps you take to keep their information private. Educate them about the benefits of health information exchange. And review your breach prevention strategies to make sure you're taking all appropriate steps, such as avoiding storing unencrypted data about millions of patients on a desktop PC.



About the Author

Howard Anderson

Howard Anderson

News Editor, ISMG

Anderson is news editor of Information Security Media Group and was founding editor of HealthcareInfoSecurity and DataBreachToday. He has more than 40 years of journalism experience, with a focus on healthcare information technology issues. Before launching HealthcareInfoSecurity, he served as founding editor of Health Data Management magazine, where he worked for 17 years, and he served in leadership roles at several other healthcare magazines and newspapers.




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