International health IT week in review: March 22

Pulse+IT's weekly round-up of international health IT news for the week ending March 22: UK clinicians can use WhatsApp, Ontario goes virtual first, Microsoft Teams for NHS, cyber-attack on Czech coronavirus hospital, cyber-attack on US health dept, mobile malware, US relaxes privacy rules, US relaxes telehealth restrictions, electronic GP referrals to pharmacy

Clinicians told they can use WhatsApp to share data in face of Covid-19
Digital Health News ~ Andrea Downey ~ 19/03/2020

Clinicians have been told they can use messaging services like WhatsApp “where the benefits outweigh the risk” to share information about coronavirus, new NHSX guidance says.

Ontario shifting to virtual-first model in bid to halt spread of COVID-19
The Star ~ Megan Ogilvie ~ 16/03/2020

Starting this week, most doctors will talk to patients on the phone, by video conference or through email as a first-step to determine who needs to come to the office for an in-person appointment.

Microsoft Teams to be rolled out across NHS in response to coronavirus
Digital Health News ~ Owen Hughes ~ 18/03/2020

Microsoft Teams is being rolled out across the entire NHS to support remote working during the coronavirus outbreak, Digital Health News can reveal.

Cyberattack on Czech hospital forces tech shutdown during coronavirus outbreak
Healthcare IT News ~ Sophie Porter ~ 19/03/2020

The hospital has one of the largest COVID-19 testing facilities in the Czech Republic.

NHS England issues 48-hour tender for online primary care consultations
Digital Health News ~ Andrea Downey ~ 19/03/2020

NHS England has issued a confidential 48-hour tender for the immediate provision of online primary care consultation to help the health service cope with patient demand in the face of the coronavirus outbreak.

COVID-19-themed malware goes mobile
Information Security Media Group ~ Ishita Chigilli Palli ~ 19/03/2020

Cybercriminals, and perhaps nation-state hackers, that are attempting to take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic are now turning their attention to mobile devices to spread malware, including spyware and ransomware, security researchers warn.

Maple launches COVID-19 online screening program
Canadian Healthcare Technology ~ Staff writer ~ 18/03/2020

Maple, a leading virtual care platform in Canada, will provide OHIP covered online coronavirus (COVID-19) screenings with a live physician to all Ontario residents.

OCR will ease restrictions on telehealth tech during COVID-19
Healthcare IT News ~ Mike Miliard ~ 18/03/2020

The privacy watchdog won't impose penalties on providers who use non-HIPAA-compliant remote communications technology during the public health emergency.

CMS shares specifics on sweeping Medicare telehealth expansion
MedCity News ~ Elise Reuter ~ 17/03/2020

While Medicare previously limited reimbursement to patients living in rural areas, HHS Secretary Alex Azar recently expanded it in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Trump administration opens up access to telehealth services during coronavirus outbreak
FierceHealthcare ~ Heather Landi ~ 17/03/2020

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is waiving certain Medicare telehealth payment requirements to enable telehealth services to be provided in all settings, including a patient's home, it was announced Tuesday.

Will telehealth limitations hamper these states’ responses to Covid-19?
MedCity News ~ Elise Reuter ~ 17/03/2020

As health systems prepare for Covid-19 outbreaks, many are turning to telehealth and triage tools as a first line of defense. How will hospitals with limited telehealth infrastructure prepare?

EMIS acquires PharmOutcomes pharmacy management platform
Digital Health News ~ Owen Hughes ~ 17/03/2020

Development work is also underway on a new end-to-end system that will make digital GP referrals to pharmacy easier, by removing the technology barrier in the current GP-Community Pharmacy Consultation Service (CPCS) pilots.

CMS loosens telehealth laws after national emergency declared for COVID-19
MedCity News ~ Elise Reuter ~ 16/03/2020

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services implemented changes that would make it easier for hospitals to stand up telehealth programs in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Cyberattack hits US health agency amid Covid-19 outbreak
Bloomberg ~ Shira Stein and Jennifer Jacobs ~ 16/03/2020

The U.S. Health and Human Services Department suffered a cyber-attack on its computer system, part of what people familiar with the incident called a campaign of disruption and disinformation that was aimed at undermining the response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Telehealth and coronavirus: privacy, security concerns
Information Security Media Group ~ Marianne Kolbasuk McGee ~ 13/03/2020

Some experts note that these providers need to carefully consider privacy and security issues as they work to quickly offer these services.

Posted in Australian eHealth

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