Why cyberattackers target health care orgs | White House to do away with cybercoordinator role | NIH looking to hire chief data strategist
May 16, 2018
Health IT SmartBrief
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Why cyberattackers target health care orgs
Why cyberattackers target health care orgs
(AFP/Getty Images)
Cyberattackers are drawn to health care organizations because providers have a large amount of protected health information and financial data, as well as complex IT infrastructures with proprietary medical devices and legacy systems, and because they depend on system availability for managing their operations, according to Rapid7's quarterly threat report. Researchers advise health care organizations to find and fix compromised employee credentials and to use two-factor authentication in response to the increase in credential and account leaks.
Health IT Security (5/15) 
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Technology Trends
White House to do away with cybercoordinator role
The White House will be eliminating the role of cybersecurity coordinator, states an email sent to National Security Council staffers Tuesday. The move is being made to "streamline authority" for senior directors, the email explains.
Politico (5/15) 
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NIH looking to hire chief data strategist
The NIH is accepting applications for the position of chief data strategist and director of its new Office of Data Science Strategy, and it will start reviewing applications July 9. The chief data strategist will be a principal adviser on large-scale platforms and technology supporting data science and will lead an NIH initiative to provide advanced technology for combining current data science projects into a single system and for furthering scientific discovery.
Becker's Health IT & CIO Report (5/15) 
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FDA launches website to reveal drugmakers blocking generic competition
FDA launches website to reveal drugmakers blocking generic competition
Gottlieb (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
The FDA will launch a website this week that will publish the names of brand-name drugmakers that have been blocking generic competition by withholding product samples from generic drug companies through safety strategies with the FDA or distribution agreements. The move is part of the government's plan to tackle high drug prices, and FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the purpose of the website is to find out the cause of the problem, not to shame drugmakers.
The Examiner (Washington, D.C.) (5/15) 
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N.J. to take on additional health insurance oversight
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy sent a letter to the CMS indicating that the state will assume responsibility for managing its health insurance exchange during the 2019 enrollment period. The state's Department of Banking and Insurance will review all plans for compliance with ACA and state laws.
NJBIZ (New Jersey) (5/15) 
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4,000+ ransomware attacks occur daily. (fbi.gov)
ARE YOU READY? Drexel University's Kline School of Law online Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity & Information Privacy Compliance prepares professionals to effectively protect against data exposure and liability, manage data breaches, and to comply with regulations businesses confront on a daily basis. Get ready.
EHRs and MU
GAO examines costs associated with obtaining medical records
The Government Accountability Office's May audit showed that fees charged to patients to access their medical records vary by request type and across the four US states reviewed, with Rhode Island being the only state that sets $100 as the maximum allowable fee charged to those requesting copies of medical records if the provider processes requests using an EHR. Having information stored on EHRs and in paper records or on multiple, disparate EHR systems presents challenges in fulfilling patient requests, the GAO found.
Becker's Health IT & CIO Report (5/15) 
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Lawmakers urge increase in Rural Health Care Program's annual cap
The Federal Communications Commission should increase the annual spending cap for the Rural Health Care Program, which provides funding to support telemedicine services in rural communities, beyond its current level of $400 million, a bipartisan group of 31 senators wrote in a letter. "Unless the spending cap is raised appropriately to account for current needs and future growth, health care providers in rural areas will encounter severe rate increases for their broadband services, making it even harder for rural health care practitioners to engage in life-saving telemedicine," the letter states.
Health Data Management (free registration) (5/15) 
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Advancing Care With IT
Company interprets brain waves to devise stroke treatment protocols
An Israeli startup is developing a way to use patients' brain waves to create a customized treatment plan for stroke victims. The company, BrainQ, uses a brain-computer interface-based EEG database for motor tasks that enables it to interpret brain waves.
TechCrunch (5/15) 
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