Mr. Scott Byron Freeman
HCA 459 Senior Project (BGM1046A)
Instructor: Kristin Akerele
November 18, 2013
Social & Ethical Trends in Health Care
The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impact of two recent social and/or ethical trends in the health care industry. This paper will specifically address the issue of patient privacy and discover if the information is actually safe. An investigation will be made into the developing architecture protecting both health records and data sharing. The affects of lost information, patient protection and the ability to streamline information in order to save more patients will be examined. This investigation will allow the understanding of a linked issue – quality patient care. As the second of three issues being researched, quality patient care has come under fire increasingly as mistakes are made and the culture in the hospital has forced personnel to adapt to morals and social norms that are not ‘The Norm’ for our staff. It is necessary to understand that different cultures see thing in a different light whether it be morally, religiously, fiscally, legally or all together ethnically. The third will be Obama care and the impact of medical insurance coverage.
In closing, this paper will show three things. First, it will show that patient privacy is not perfect, but is being taken seriously. Secondly, it will show that quality patient care depends on the ability of the medical personal to adapt and adopt new attitudes, new understandings, and better safety steps. Lastly, this paper will show if ‘Obama Care was the right move at this time and if it really helps people get the insurance necessary.
With the advances in technology it appears the less secure vital information has become. In a world that has gone from remembering your combination lock, we now have to mesmerize several passwords. A single person has to not only remember their check account number and routing number, but now they have their telephone banking access code, their credit card pin number, their social security number, several email passwords, work email, time cards log in, systems program log in and the list goes on. You would believe that with all the passwords and codes that have to be learned, things would be secure. In a report by Thomas R. Dominczyk, it reads, “It is hard to believe that less than 10 years ago, full Social Security numbers were contains on most things and appeared on the docket reports available on PACER. In recent years, as the dangers of identity theft and similar crimes have grown, US bankruptcy courts have taken steps to remove nonpublic information from its filings…. (Dominczyk, Apr, 2010)
In April of 2010 D A Davidson & Co were fined due to a data breach (Manning, 2010). You will not only find this problem in banking and finance companies, the problem, is wide spread. In November of 2010 the Wall Street Journal ran an article about Facebook user data being sold to a broker.
Facebook Inc. said that a data broker has been paying application developers for identifying user information, and that it had placed some developers on a six-month suspension from its site because of the practice. (Fowler & Steel, 2010)
Information privacy has become the bane of many companies’ security departments. The list of companies that can be linked to data infractions reads like the who’s who of business: Verizon, Bank of America, Veterans Hospital, Sprint, Wells Fargo, Chase Bank, the list goes on and on into every filed. The one filed that has seemed to worry everybody even more is in the health care industry. Because of the sensitivity of information shared between a doctor and his/her patient, the miscellaneous and careless release of pertinent patient information is a red herring that no one wants to be at fault for. Many steps are taken in order to protect a patients information. Prescription