NR 360 RUA Week 3 Information Systems in Healthcare

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Patient data exposure to the media

Mass casualty incidents can occur due to various factors, such as natural disasters, accidental explosions, or intentional acts of violence. In such incidents, the occurrence of severe burns depends on the event’s cause, magnitude, and location. With the changing geopolitical landscape, conflicts and terrorism in civilian areas have become more frequent, leading to more urban terrorism incidents. Many of these incidents can be categorized as large-scale disasters due to the many casualties involved. During these situations, patient data needs to be rapidly transmitted while ensuring the safety and well-being of the victims. However, the limited time available often hinders adherence to established procedures if proper preparation is not done in advance.

This paper focuses on the legal and regulatory aspects of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) in a scenario where a HIPAA violation has occurred, resulting in the exposure of patient data to the media. Recommendations will be provided, and the advantages and disadvantages of using technology in healthcare will be thoroughly discussed.

NR 360 RUA Week 3 Information Systems in Healthcare

HIPAA, legal, and Regulatory Discussion

Technology has revolutionized nursing care by introducing electronic data registers and other technologies that enhance the accessibility of healthcare services. However, this advancement also challenges maintaining patient privacy, a key focus of HIPAA standards. With the interconnectedness of technology, patient data can be shared across various electronic platforms within minutes. Ensuring patient privacy becomes a top priority for healthcare facilities as technological advancements create new dimensions for intentional and unintentional HIPAA violations (Edemekong & Micelle, 2018).

Technology also affects nursing care about healthcare regulations. The technologies can make it easier for nurses to violate rules by discussing or sharing patient information without authorization. Failure to comply with legal guidelines regarding the appropriate use of technology poses risks to patient privacy. Leaked patient data often originates from nurses’ involvement in social media sites and other online platforms. Adherence to privacy requirements and healthcare laws is crucial to prevent unauthorized disclosure of patient information.

NR 360 RUA Week 3 Information Systems in Healthcare

Scenario ending and recommendations

In the selected scenario, a HIPAA violation occurs, exposing client data to the media. The situation arises after a mass casualty incident in a large metropolitan healthcare facility. Several essential aspects came to light during this event. The problem was extremely challenging due to the high number of injured individuals requiring immediate attention simultaneously, while the available human and material resources were limited. The healthcare facility would have been better equipped to handle the situation if it had involved multiple patients arriving at different times. In such a case, resources could be utilized more effectively, allowing time for reassembly and preparation between patients requiring the same level of attention.

The violation of HIPAA standards regarding patient privacy and the subsequent sharing of information with the media created a complex scenario that required careful handling. The first step was to acknowledge the problem’s existence. Subsequently, the healthcare facility promptly convened a security meeting to outline the areas that needed investigation. The panel also emphasized the importance of establishing a legal strategy to address potential legal actions from the patient or government authorities about HIPAA violations, including fines.

NR 360 RUA Week 3 Information Systems in Healthcare

Before implementing any actions based on security guidelines, the committee responsible for addressing the issue briefed the patient and their family members, informing them about the steps to regain. This communication provided information and conveyed the hospital management’s concern and commitment to supporting the patient in resolving the issue. Furthermore, the healthcare facility contacted the media outlets involved to identify the source of the exposed data that reached unintended audiences.

The healthcare facility. First, enforcing and updating privacy rules is crucial to ensure that electronic information systems, buildings, and equipment are always kept free from unauthorized individuals (Jannetti, 2014). Additionally, all healthcare personnel should receive regular education and reminders regarding the importance of safeguarding patient data and records at all times. Nurses and other staff must refrain from using personal smartphones in patient rooms. The facility should also emphasize that it is illegal for healthcare personnel to share patient information or images with friends or family without authorization from the hospital administration.

Advantages and disadvantages

The integration of technology in nursing care. When utilized appropriately, technology enables easy and efficient record-keeping of patient medical records, leading to quicker access to medical information when needed (Ives, 2014). In surgical settings, the proper use of technology has facilitated faster and more accurate procedures for surgeons. As Collier (2014) points out, surgeons can now perform operations in remote areas through digital medical applications and robotic technology, allowing simultaneous activities as if the surgeon were physically in the operating room. Technology has also transformed nursing practice by eliminating the need for nurses to attend to each patient constantly. Using sensors and technology, nurses can observe and prioritize patient care based on real-time information (Wikina, 2014).

However, there are challenges associated with technology, particularly concerning data privacy. The extensive use of devices and equipment for data collection and storage can create vulnerabilities, making it easier to breach data privacy rules and potentially leading to data loss, theft, or unauthorized exposure of patient information within minutes (Liu, Musen, & Chou, 2015). Protecting data privacy becomes complex due to the multitude of technological devices involved in the healthcare environment.

Conclusions and reflections

Violating HIPAA standards on privacy poses significant consequences for healthcare facilities and the patients involved. The introduction of technology has brought about substantial changes to healthcare facilities, particularly in patient data and privacy. In today’s interconnected world, sharing a patient’s data across multiple electronic platforms only takes a few minutes. Recognizing that privacy is a top priority for healthcare facilities is commendable. However, it is crucial to acknowledge that technological advancements have introduced new complexities, necessitating extra caution to prevent intentional and unintentional breaches of HIPAA privacy standards.


Edemekong, P. F., & Micelle, H. J. (2018). Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Stat Pearls. DOI: 10.1001/jama.2015.2252. Jannetti, M.C. (2014). Safeguarding patient information in electronic health records. AORN J. 100(3):C7–C8. DOI: 10.1016/S0001-2092(14)00873-4. Collier, R. (2014). New tools to improve the safety of electronic health records. CMAJ. 186(4):251– 251. DOI: 10.1503/cmaj.109-4715.Perspect. Health Inf. Mana. 2014:1–16. Ives, T.E. (2014). The New ‘E-Clinician’ Guide to Compliance. Audiol. Today. 26(1):52–53.