Medical professionals should always value a patient’s ethical right to privacy and confidentiality. Under the HIPPA law, there are still concerns with the protection of patient privacy; therefore, healthcare professionals must confront the growing technological environment and find ways to increase access security, as well as discipline employees that violate a patient’s privacy. Electronic health records can be beneficial to providers from a cost and efficiency standpoint, but are patients really better off with a paperless system?5
Privacy relates to people; confidentiality relates to data. A patient has a right to privacy and confidentiality concerning their mental and physical medical records. The term privacy has been defined as an…show more content… Healthcare providers are able to communicate easier via electronic medical records and under the HIPPA law it is illegal to release patient information to other non-healthcare professional parties. HIPPA states, “covered entities are required to protect the confidentiality or integrity of medical information stored in electric records.5
Confidentiality extends past privacy and protects identifiable data. So, what is considered confidential patient information? Confidential patient information consists of Protected Health Information (PHI). The PHI contains the patient’s demographic information, social security number, diagnoses codes, medical record number, name of doctors, conversations between healthcare providers, billing information, images of the patient, and medications. Confidential information is seen electronically in a patient’s medical record everyday and sometimes employees forget how important it is to keep a patient’s information confidential. Mental and physical conditions, treatment plans and daily notes are documented in electronic medical records.
The healthcare industry benefits from Electronic Medical Records (EMR). Electronic software is used to store and transfer patient health records. The advances in technology allow healthcare professionals to access and share patient medical history. Such a system may decrease health care costs, increase the quality of patient care, facilitate better departmental communication, create less paper confusion,