Healthcare Technology Featured Article

February 08, 2017

Uniphy Health Launches a new App to Secure Communications

The regulatory compliances in healthcare demand that communications be secured across devices and platforms to ensure the privacy of patients. As more healthcare providers deploy mobile devices, apps, and collaboration solutions, staying compliant is getting more difficult and it requires proper vetting before any of the products and services vendors provide are implemented. Uniphy Health, provider of clinical communication and collaboration solutions used in acute and post-acute care settings, has launched a mobile app for physicians to increase immediate and secure communication among hospital staff and physicians, which was timed with Catholic Health Services (CHS) deploying the solution.

The CHS in Long Island serves hundreds of thousands of residents every year with an integrated healthcare delivery system and collaboration with the regions health and human services agencies. It includes six hospitals, three skilled nursing facilities, a regional home nursing service, hospice, and a multiservice community-based agency for persons with special needs.

"At a time when health care organizations are being asked to run more like efficient corporations, they need the same powerful groupware tools that businesses have depended on for decades. Not having those systems in place makes it harder to deliver high-quality care to consumers," said Uniphy Health Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Stuart Hochron.

In addressing the communications needs of these facilities and its staff, the Uniphy Health secure, cloud-based platform was used to build the CHS app with features to simplify secure communications, collaboration and coordination. Will The app provides searchable physician directory, patient consults, image sharing for remote diagnoses, message delivery and receipt confirmation, and organization news and alerts.

The Uniphy Care Platform meets the highest standards in HIPAA compliance with clear policies on user responsibilities, and warning if/when a user may risk a HIPAA violation. It uses 256-bit encryption for secure communications of texts and consults that are sent and received, which are secured within the app. And users are required to pass double-authentication to use the app, with authentication keys controlled by the admin of each organization.

Additional security features include lock-out after long period of non-use, remote wipe of user's app by admin if the device is lost or stolen, securely managed archives to comply with HIPAA requirements in audited data center, continuous monitoring and more.

CHS Vice President for Clinical Transformation and Population Health Joel Shu, M.D., said "It was apparent that Uniphy Health addressed CHS’s and its clinically integrated physician network’s requirements. The differentiator with Uniphy Health is that their platform is designed from the ground up for clinical communications. There are bigger players in health care IT, the EHRs, for example, but when they try to bolt something onto their existing systems, it’s not always successful."

Edited by Stefania Viscusi

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