Future Health - 10/11/18

Delivering care in the new virtual world…

 From Bullets to Bytes – There’s a new kind of warfare being used at the forefront of international conflicts that has troubling implications.  According to a new report by CB Insights the exploitation of data is on a very troubling increase. Here are some data points to consider:

  • 3 billion – the number of compromised accounts in the Yahoo breach where thieves were able to obtain names, email addresses, phone numbers and other data
  • 200 million – the number of registered US voters whose personal information was accidentally exposed online,
  • 146 million – the Equifax breach affected this number of folks and it contained SSA numbers, birth dates, addresses and the like affecting about 50% of the USA population,
  • 57 million – data stolen from Uber customers where the thieves extorted $100,000 from the company, and,
  • On and on and on…

But as troubling at these points are, the even more challenging piece is the use of inaccurate data and information to sway people.  And, it’s not just emails that are being sent. It’s pictures that have been photoshopped, it’s queries from people that are simply fishing, it’s a whole range of strategies designed to upset the apple cart of opinion, perspective and thoughts.  In particular, these attacks are using “bytes” instead of “bullets” to engage in a type of warfare that we’ve never experienced before.  I’m not panicking.  But, I am forewarning.  As a country, we need to be investing much more aggressively in developing capabilities to counteract these byte-size warfare patterns.  Health care – in particular – is an industry that is ripe for invasion.  We need to be on the alert to a much higher degree than currently exists within our community.  While some attention is being given to cybersecurity and the needs within the health care community – we could be doing better.  The problem with “bytes” is that they can hurt just as much as “bullets” and even more so in some cases.  Stay tuned. 

 Kaiser Reports on Video Visits – Just today as I was writing my blog, a report came out from Kaiser in the New England Journal of Medicine on the use of telemedicine by Kaiser physicians.  Since 2015 when the program was implemented, there have been over 200,000 scheduled video visits for a variety of problems.  The bulk of the visits were for issues related to medicine, pediatrics, dermatology, after-hours care and psychiatry.  Importantly, over 90% of the patients who access telemedicine services had accessed in-person health care services in the prior year.  Finally, among the visits – 70% were completed with the patient’s own primary care provider.  Now this is an integrated approach.  It’s what’s missing from much of the health care community. 

Healthcare Consultants

    ...Inspiring creative change to benefit the human condition