Letter from MDAdvantage® Chairman and CEO Patricia A. Costante
We have reached the final issue of MDAdvisor for 2020—a very challenging year indeed. Throughout the year, we covered many important topics, with a primary focus on bringing readers the information they need on the COVID-19 pandemic. We also continued to publish articles on opioid use and abuse, as well as regulatory and legislative news and updates.
In this issue, we focus on another key topic: cybersecurity. Cyberattacks and data breaches continue to hit the healthcare industry at unprecedented rates, and the pandemic has left providers more vulnerable than ever.
We have proudly implemented significant enhancements to MDAdvisor in the past year. We updated our website and launched a new digital version of our journal to ensure that the issues are easily accessible to everyone. We integrated many of our journal articles with our podcast series to provide even more great content from experts on a variety of topics. Additionally, starting with this Fall 2020 issue, we are introducing a new platform for our CME article post-tests that provides the ability to download CME certificates immediately upon successful completion.
As we move into 2021, we look forward to bringing you the very latest updates on the pandemic and other topics and news items as they arise.
Chairman & CEO
MDAdvantage Insurance Company
Table of Contents
News & Acknowledgements
What’s Happening in Healthcare?
Healthcare Data Breaches Expected to Triple in 2021
According to a report by Black Book Market Research, data breaches in the healthcare industry are expected to triple in volume in 2021. The study indicated that nearly 75% of health system, hospitals and physician organizations feel their infrastructures are unprepared to respond to attacks, and that the demand for cybersecurity professionals within the healthcare industry far exceeds the talent pool. Additionally, the research revealed that 90% of health system and hospital employees who are now working remotely due to the outbreak of COVID-19 were not given any updated security guidelines or training on accessing sensitive patient data.
(Infosecurity Magazine, 11/16/2020).
COVID-19 Vaccine Documents and Personal Data Leaked on Internet
COVID-19 vaccine and medication documents, including some containing personal information, were stolen in a cyberattack of the European Medicines Agency in December 2020, and have been leaked on the Internet. U.S.-based Pfizer and Germany-based BioNTech, which have partnered on a COVID-19 vaccine, issued a joint statement acknowledging that some documents relating to their submission of the vaccine to the EMA for regulatory approval had been unlawfully accessed. U.S.-based pharmaceutical firm Moderna also appears to have been affected by the EMA cyberattack. Some of these leaked documents were manipulated by the perpetrators prior to publication in a way that could undermine trust in vaccines.