Nov 21 2022

Why Healthcare Cybersecurity Is a Team Effort

Just as care teams work together to treat patients, organizations can rely on partnerships to improve the health of their security strategies.

Healthcare organizations face a staffing shortage when it comes to physicians and nurses, but they’re also in urgent need of skilled cybersecurity professionals. And as more health systems experience ransomware and potential vulnerabilities in connected medical devices, security must be a top organizational goal.

Health systems are well aware of the potential impact of cyberattacks on patient care, but they are running into issues trying to address it amid budget constraints and workforce shortages. They don’t have to shoulder the burden alone. Just as care teams work together to treat patients, organizations can rely on partnerships to improve the health of their security. And just as clinicians provide a whole-person approach to care, a partnership with a healthcare security expert can offer a more holistic path rather than patched-together solutions.

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Security Should Always Be Top of Mind for Healthcare Tech Initiatives

October may have been Cybersecurity Awareness Month, but HealthTech offers year-round security coverage.

Get insights from experienced leaders such as Tanya Townsend, senior vice president and CIO of New Orleans-based LCMC Health. In our interview, “Q&A: LCMC Health’s Tanya Townsend on Industry Change and Workforce Retention,” she discusses her decadeslong career in healthcare IT and her path to becoming LCMC Health’s first CIO. In 2016, she stood up the health system’s first information security office.

“It’s not just about putting in technical solutions,” Townsend says. “We’re doing a lot around user education, because attackers are getting smarter about social engineering and phishing campaigns.”

Don’t forget to check out the security-related feature stories as well. In “Stronger Together: IT Integration and Security Lessons from Healthcare M&As,” three health systems share their experiences with IT integration and security after a merger or acquisition. Luminis Health in Maryland, for instance, examined its security posture after merging two hospitals and preparing to scale for its next growth phase.

“Our priority was to make sure we have the same security protections and the same set of eyes and ears,” Luminis Health CISO Mike Widerman says.

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