Security No. 1 Barrier to Mobile Tech

Survey Identifies Concerns, Challenges in Using Mobile Devices
Security No. 1 Barrier to Mobile Tech
The No. 1 barrier to more widespread use of mobile technologies in healthcare is inadequate privacy and security, according to a new survey.

The 2011 HIMSS Mobile Technology Survey, which polled 164 executives involved in a healthcare organization's mobile strategies, found that 60 percent cite privacy and security concerns as a key barrier, compared with 48 percent who cite lack of funding and 39 percent who singled out lack of IT staff.

Privacy and security ranks as the No. 2 concern among clinicians regarding the use of mobile technology, the survey shows. Ranking No. 1 is speed of accessing data.

When it comes to securing data on mobile devices, 92 percent report using passwords, while 73 percent report using data encryption, and 53 percent use remote wipe capability.

Other key findings from the survey released this week by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society are:

  • 93 percent say clinicians at their organization access information using mobile devices. Laptop computers and computers mounted on mobile carts are the devices most commonly used.
  • Mobile devices that organizations anticipate will become more widely used among clinicians are tablet computers not designed for healthcare, as well as smart phones.
  • The most frequently identified benefits from using mobile technology are improved access to patient information and the ability to view data from a remote location.
  • 38 percent of participants say their organization has a mobile technology policy in place.
  • 55 percent say they support only mobile devices that are owned by the organization and 41 percent support devices owned by the user.
  • 28 percent permit the use of mobile devices that store patient information.

About the Author

Howard Anderson

Howard Anderson

News Editor, ISMG

Anderson is news editor of Information Security Media Group and was founding editor of HealthcareInfoSecurity and DataBreachToday. He has more than 40 years of journalism experience, with a focus on healthcare information technology issues. Before launching HealthcareInfoSecurity, he served as founding editor of Health Data Management magazine, where he worked for 17 years, and he served in leadership roles at several other healthcare magazines and newspapers.

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