Safe and efficient healthcare relies on your patient’s information disclosure. When seeking health services, your patient displays personal issues before you, and it is your responsibility to keep them confidential. Keeping your patients’ medical information private is in line with your professional code of conduct. Failure to embrace confidentiality results in patient mistrust and fear. According to Forbes, 87% of patients find it difficult to fully disclose their conditions to the healthcare providers. Such situations can be fatal as the patients do not get the appropriate care. Also, non-disclosure can lead to misdiagnosis and drug interactions, affecting the patients’ quality of life. Here are ways to ensure your medical information is confidential.
Create Strict Confidentiality Policies and Agreements
Confidentiality policies and agreements keep your medical team alert when handling patient information. With these policies, your team knows what is expected of them in every medical situation. Create time for your team to read and sign against all the confidentiality policies and agreements. Failure to adhere to them should lead to pre-stated consequences.
Also, to strengthen patient trust, loyalty, and transparency, you should circulate these policies and agreements among your patients. Such actions give them peace of mind as they feel assured that their sensitive information is in safe hands.
Provide Consistent Training
Comprehension of the set confidential policies is the basis of staff adherence. Make it a routine to hold regular training sessions on the need to embrace confidentiality. Once your medical staff understands their confidentiality duty, they work towards meeting the set professional expectations.
Additionally, the training sessions should incorporate fun and bonding among your staff. In the end, the sessions become more engaging, hence promoting compliance with the confidentiality policies and regulations.
Embrace Security on the Information Storage Systems
Your health facility receives new patients each day. Therefore, patient information increases and your staff may experience challenges in storing additional information safely. Improper storage can lead to possible breaches of medical records, impacting patient information confidentiality.
With the advancement of technology, security issues have been revolutionized. You should embrace digital tools to enhance your patient information safety and security. Equally, you should restrict unauthorized people from accessing specific patient data. For instance, if a worker doesn’t belong to a radiology medical transcription department in your hospital, he/she is unauthorized to handle data from these areas. You should consider investing in strong passwords to restrict unauthorized patient data accessibility.
Restrict the Use of Mobile Phones
Mobile phones and other personal digital gadgets can be threats to patient information confidentiality. Your workers may feel the need to share their patient concerns with their colleagues or third parties through digital devices. Some of your workers may go the extra mile to record and photograph ailing patients, hampering your patients’ privacy.
Since these gadgets pose a privacy risk, you should reasonably restrict their use within patient rooms. It’s prudent to explain this decision to workers to minimize resistance. You should make your medical staff understand the best interests of the patients. Ultimately, your team will hold onto their duties to enhance patient information confidentiality in the long run.
Secure Your Facility’s Printing Systems
With all the security factors in place, your staff may forget some confidential patient documents in the printer. If such a printer is shared, the information can get into the wrong hands, fostering information theft. Password protected printing can help reduce confidentiality breaches as the printed documents can only be accessed by inputting the required passwords.
Patient information confidentiality is a controversial issue in the modern healthcare environment. Without the right techniques, your patients may lack trust in your healthcare facility. Therefore, to promote medical information confidentiality, you should embrace various tips, including creating strict confidentiality policies and agreements, providing consistent training, and securing information storage systems. You can also secure your facility’s printing systems and restrict the use of mobile phones. Ultimately, using these tips, you can enhance medical information confidentiality.