Healthcare information technology is becoming the new norm for hospitals, private practices, and other healthcare providers. Since the late 2000s when electronic health record (EHR) and electronic medical record (EMR) systems sprung up in hospitals everywhere, these specialized systems have given healthcare providers a way to digitally capture and store specific medical records and information in a secure environment.
EHR, EMR, or DMS?
In brief, the difference between EHR and EMR systems lies in capabilities. In most cases, EMR systems are specific to keeping patient health records digitally for quick updating and accessibility. EHR systems are typically more comprehensive, not only acting as a repository for clinical records but also featuring functions to share medical records with other healthcare organizations as well as providing resources for treatment.
Despite the specialized nature of both EHR and EMR systems, they’re rarely consistent in what type of features they provide for users. While different systems may specialize in certain aspects of healthcare, they are far from being all-in-one solutions for a hospital’s many information and document needs.
For example, many EHR systems are only set up to capture and store certain types of health records and only in limited, proprietary file formats. In contrast, a document management system (DMS) like Rubex by eFileCabinet is capable of handling nearly any document format and can be configured to handle other processes besides managing patient records, such as accounting and HR. Document management software even has a secure file-sharing function, so hospitals can safely share electronic health records from practice to practice or from location to location with no concerns.
Another drawback to EHR or EMR systems is that they’re often unwieldy and have a high learning curve for administrators to use effectively and with the efficiency they’re meant to enable. Rubex by eFileCabinet is easy to learn – for administrators and healthcare providers – and has a wide variety of functionalities to simplify any workflow or process involved in patient care.
HIPAA Focused Security
While security is important in any digital record system, specific security regulations are especially necessary in managing health information. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) outlines strict regulations to protect patient privacy and data.
Rubex by eFileCabinet has customizable security policies that can be set to meet HIPAA’s strict requirements, such as setting password complexity. You can’t allow users to have four character passwords, or have their password their birthdate. Set the minimum amount of characters as well as requiring different character types and setting a timeframe of when passwords need to be reset.
Multi-factor authentication is also a must-have for any electronic system containing sensitive information. If a user’s password falls into the wrong hands, there needs to be another safeguard to prevent that unauthorized party from gaining access to private patient data. This typically comes in the form of a randomly generated code sent to the user’s personal device. You can further customize security with requirements to only have authorized logins and data access possible at chosen IP-addresses, as well as only having the system accessible to certain users during designated times of the day.
Access Controls Ensure Records Are Private
HIPAA rules related to record-keeping are all about access. Besides having a network that’s secured with refined cybersecurity like endpoint protection, access control is a big part of security requirements. Since many data breaches happen internally after malicious parties gain access, having an interface that has strict access controls is essential. With access controls, protected health information can only be accessed by authorized personnel with the intent of using it for purposes related to clinical care, patient treatment and billing. With so many users accessing the system at all hours of the day, the only way to prevent an unauthorized user from accessing protected information or data is to have a robust role-based permission access policy.
With Rubex, sorting your permissions by groups is an efficient way of ensuring access to certain records is available to select categories of users. For example, you can set it so only a doctor has access to their patients’ folders. For everyone else on the system, the health records are invisible.
Rubex by eFileCabinet
While many healthcare organizations or practices use EHR/EMR systems, they are often complicated to navigate when it comes to HIPAA compliance. They often require further controls and electronic configurations from IT, especially if your files are located on-premise.
However, Rubex by eFileCabinet allows you to set up a customized system that follows HIPAA security regulations and stores data in a compliant cloud location. Rubex is easy to learn, and easy to use, and there’s little else that IT needs to configure to ensure compliance.
To see Rubex in action, click here to set up a free, personalized demo.