Could Increasing Use Of Mobile Medical Devices Lead To Stolen Patient Information? Not If A Bug Tag Is On A Tablet

iPad Theft-4                                                                                                                           WC Blog 378
Tablet theft-4
Bug Tag-4
Could Increasing Use Of Mobile Medical Devices Lead To Stolen Patient Information? Not If A Bug Tag Is On A Tablet
     We all know that mobile medical devices such as iPads and computer tablets are getting more and more use in hospitals, clinics, doctor’s offices and the medical field in general. We register as new patients on mobile devices at the front desk of a clinic, or we may be asked to complete medical histories on a nurse’s iPad. I was curious to know what the top uses of mobile devices actually is for doctors. According to a Wolters-Kluwer 2013 Physician Outlook Survey, the following were the mobile device uses by physicians (pg. 6):
Access to drug information (dosage calculators, side effects, interactions, etc.):
72% smartphone (e.g. iPhone, Droid) 55% tablets (e.g. iPad, Kindle Fire)
Communication with nurses and other staff:
44% smartphone 20% tablets
Access to medical research:
43% smartphone 63% tablets
Access to evidence based clinical reference tools at the point of care with patients:
42% smartphone 50% tablets
Communication with patients:
33% smartphone 17% tablets
Access to medical records/other patient data:
17% smartphone 43% tablets
Access to information for reimbursement/billing purposes:
12% smartphone 24% tablets
Other:
9% smartphone 13% tablets
Did you notice the “access to medical records/other patient data” and “access to information for reimbursement/billing” categories? Tablets and iPads are used significantly for looking at information specific to patients. What happens in the event of a Tablet theft or iPad theft? What information may be accessible by a thief? 
     The answer is, you don’t know how much of a patient’s information may be stolen and used for stealing identities, credit information, addresses, prescriptions, etc. Medical tablet theft and Ipad theft are very real problems and put patients and their medical providers at risk. Using a Bug Tag on each device owned by the medical facility can prevent theft and potential HIPPA violations. The tag is an electronic article surveillance (EAS) anti-theft device. It is placed directly on a table or other device and can’t be removed without activating a built in alarm that screeches at 95 decibels, alerting staff to an attempted theft. Facilities also install EAS pedestals at entrances that can detect a Bug Tag. If a criminal tries to walk out with a device that is tagged (or if an employee forgets they have a device with them and they try to leave the building) the tag sets off the EAS pedestal alarm. Again, employees respond and can recover it before a tablet theft or iPad theft can take place. It is also important to know that the Bug Tag does come in a “3 alarm” version that activates a built in alarm in the tag if a person were to continue walking past the pedestals into a parking lot. This alarm prevents a thief from blending into a crowd and getting away unnoticed.
     Going back to the 2013 Physician Outlook Survey, consider the information we are looking at, this data is four years old or more. As the popularity of the devices has increased with more apps available to doctors and nurses and the time and paperwork they save is realized, the numbers of devices in use are greater. This means the opportunity for iPad theft and Tablet theft is greater as well, making the security of them even more important today than it was in 2013. I know from my own recent visits to two local hospitals and a clinic in my area that mobile device use has become the norm in the medical profession. A close family member of mine was in an ICU unit and when doctors made their rounds individually and as a group most of the members had iPads or tablets. When I recently was at a local clinic I signed in on an iPad. My wife has signed in at a minute clinic on a mounted iPad. It is clear that the wave of the future is the move from paper to electronic records. Protecting this data is critical.
     Improving efficiency in the medical field ultimately improves patient care and can drive down costs. In doing so, it is imperative that patient information is protected in the process by preventing iPad theft through the use of a Bug Tag.
Need information on iPad theft? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now.

We all know that mobile medical devices such as iPads and computer tablets are getting more and more use in hospitals, clinics, doctor’s offices and the medical field in general. We register as new patients on mobile devices at the front desk of a clinic, or we may be asked to complete medical histories on a nurse’s iPad. I was curious to know what the top uses of mobile devices actually is for doctors. According to a Wolters-Kluwer 2013 Physician Outlook Survey, the following were the mobile device uses by physicians (pg. 6):

Access to drug information (dosage calculators, side effects, interactions, etc.):72% smartphone (e.g. iPhone, Droid) 55% tablets (e.g. iPad, Kindle Fire)

Communication with nurses and other staff:44% smartphone 20% tablets

Access to medical research:43% smartphone 63% tablets

Access to evidence based clinical reference tools at the point of care with patients:42% smartphone 50% tablets

Communication with patients:33% smartphone 17% tabletsAccess to medical records/other patient data:17% smartphone 43% tablets

Access to information for reimbursement/billing purposes:12% smartphone 24% tablets

Other:9% smartphone 13% tablets

Did you notice the “access to medical records/other patient data” and “access to information for reimbursement/billing” categories? Tablets and iPads are used significantly for looking at information specific to patients. What happens in the event of a Tablet theft or iPad theft? What information may be accessible by a thief? 
     

 

The answer is, you don’t know how much of a patient’s information may be stolen and used for stealing identities, credit information, addresses, prescriptions, etc. Medical tablet theft and Ipad theft are very real problems and put patients and their medical providers at risk. Using a Bug Tag on each device owned by the medical facility can prevent theft and potential HIPPA violations. The tag is an electronic article surveillance (EAS) anti-theft device. It is placed directly on a table or other device and can’t be removed without activating a built in alarm that screeches at 95 decibels, alerting staff to an attempted theft. Facilities also install EAS pedestals at entrances that can detect a Bug Tag. If a criminal tries to walk out with a device that is tagged (or if an employee forgets they have a device with them and they try to leave the building) the tag sets off the EAS pedestal alarm. Again, employees respond and can recover it before a tablet theft or iPad theft can take place. It is also important to know that the Bug Tag does come in a “3 alarm” version that activates a built in alarm in the tag if a person were to continue walking past the pedestals into a parking lot. This alarm prevents a thief from blending into a crowd and getting away unnoticed.
     

Going back to the 2013 Physician Outlook Survey, consider the information we are looking at, this data is four years old or more. As the popularity of the devices has increased with more apps available to doctors and nurses and the time and paperwork they save is realized, the numbers of devices in use are greater. This means the opportunity for iPad theft and Tablet theft is greater as well, making the security of them even more important today than it was in 2013. I know from my own recent visits to two local hospitals and a clinic in my area that mobile device use has become the norm in the medical profession. A close family member of mine was in an ICU unit and when doctors made their rounds individually and as a group most of the members had iPads or tablets. When I recently was at a local clinic I signed in on an iPad. My wife has signed in at a minute clinic on a mounted iPad. It is clear that the wave of the future is the move from paper to electronic records. Protecting this data is critical.
     

Improving efficiency in the medical field ultimately improves patient care and can drive down costs. In doing so, it is imperative that patient information is protected in the process by preventing iPad theft through the use of a Bug Tag.

 

Need information on iPad theft? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now.

 

Sometimes Compromise Is Good Except When It Is Patient Information That Is Compromised; Prevent Medical Ipad Theft With An Alpha Bug Tag

 

Ipad theft-3                                                                                                                             WC Blog 377
Bug Tag-3
Sometimes Compromise Is Good Except When It Is Patient Information That Is Compromised; Prevent Medical Ipad Theft With An Alpha Bug Tag
     April 22nd, 2017 in Fairfax County Virginia, a suspect was being sought in the theft of cash AND iPads from medical offices on the Inova Fair Oaks Medical Campus, according to an April 25th, 2017 report on the WJLA website, the story by Nancy Chen. The subject of the investigation is accused of 17 break-ins on the campus. A June 1, 2017 article on the website, laist, by Julia Wick, titled, “Massive Security Breach At Rodeo Drive Plastic Surgery Clinic Put Thousands Of Patient Files At Risk”, reported that “…an estimated 15,000 files containing medical and other personal information were stolen from their practice”. An Office Manager for the practice acting as spokesman said, “When we entered we saw that every bit of medical records had been taken including backup hard drives and iPads with patient information,…” The fact that patient information can be so easily compromised is disconcerting. Think about all of the information you provide to a doctor during a visit. Not long ago I made a visit to a doctor and I had to give them my name, address, social security number, place of employment, date of birth, medical insurance card and patient medical history. Interestingly enough I gave it via an iPad on a bracket at the sign in counter. That’s a lot of personal information for a criminal to get their hands on if there was an iPad theft at this location. The fact is, iPads were stolen at the two locations the articles mentioned. Granted these were break-ins versus thefts during operating hours but the devices are gone and with them any patient data that may have been stored on them. There is a device called a Bug Tag that can help prevent an iPad theft or medical tablet theft from a medical provider’s office.
     The concern with a tablet or iPad is that they can be so small that they are easy to conceal in a purse, under a shirt, or in a cargo pants pocket. If a medical mobile device is stolen it is quite easy for a thief to hide the item(s) and stroll out of the building unnoticed. A Bug Tag is attached directly to the mobile device with an adhesive and tamper protections prevent someone from removing the tag without setting off a built in alarm in the tag. Along with placing the tags on tablets and iPads facilities set up electronic article surveillance (EAS) towers at entrances and areas where such devices do not need to be taken, such as at a point in front of restroom doors. Should someone approach a tower the sensor in the tower detects the Bug Tag and alarms in the tower are set off. Facility, staff and employees can respond and recover the device before it can be removed from the building or taken into an off-limits area.
     I know that the stories I referenced were about break-ins and my point was to demonstrate that devices that have or potentially have patient information can be stolen and place patients at risk. But consider that on February 8, 2017 a criminal stole several iPads from the lobby of Leamington District Memorial Hospital. On March 23, 2016, two iPads were stolen from Hawke’s Bay Fallen Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital’s Children’s Ward according to OURHEALTH Hawke’s Bay’s website. The article states, “…the two stolen iPads – one belonging to the Hospital Play Specialist Service and the other the property of the Medical Team in the Children’s Ward.” These stories are reminders that iPad theft and medical tablet theft is a real problem and if not protected there is a good chance someone will try to steal them and the patient information they contain.
     The job of the medical providers is to care for their patients. Take care of their health and their patient information. Place a Bug Tag on each of your iPads and tablets and an EAS tower at all of your entrances and off-limit areas. 
Get more information on iPad Theft, contact us or call 1.866.914.2567 today.
        
      

On April 22nd, 2017 in Fairfax County Virginia, a suspect was being sought in the theft of cash AND iPads from medical offices on the Inova Fair Oaks Medical Campus, according to an April 25th, 2017 report on the WJLA website, the story by Nancy Chen. The subject of the investigation is accused of 17 break-ins on the campus. A June 1, 2017 article on the website, laist, by Julia Wick, titled, “Massive Security Breach At Rodeo Drive Plastic Surgery Clinic Put Thousands Of Patient Files At Risk”, reported that “…an estimated 15,000 files containing medical and other personal information were stolen from their practice”. An Office Manager for the practice acting as spokesman said, “When we entered we saw that every bit of medical records had been taken including backup hard drives and iPads with patient information,…” The fact that patient information can be so easily compromised is disconcerting. Think about all of the information you provide to a doctor during a visit. Not long ago I made a visit to a doctor and I had to give them my name, address, social security number, place of employment, date of birth, medical insurance card and patient medical history. Interestingly enough I gave it via an iPad on a bracket at the sign in counter. That’s a lot of personal information for a criminal to get their hands on if there was an iPad theft at this location. The fact is, iPads were stolen at the two locations the articles mentioned. Granted these were break-ins versus thefts during operating hours but the devices are gone and with them any patient data that may have been stored on them. There is a device called a Bug Tag that can help prevent an iPad theft or medical tablet theft from a medical provider’s office.

The concern with a tablet or iPad is that they can be so small that they are easy to conceal in a purse, under a shirt, or in a cargo pants pocket. If a medical mobile device is stolen it is quite easy for a thief to hide the item(s) and stroll out of the building unnoticed. A Bug Tag is attached directly to the mobile device with an adhesive and tamper protections prevent someone from removing the tag without setting off a built in alarm in the tag. Along with placing the tags on tablets and iPads facilities set up electronic article surveillance (EAS) towers at entrances and areas where such devices do not need to be taken, such as at a point in front of restroom doors. Should someone approach a tower the sensor in the tower detects the Bug Tag and alarms in the tower are set off. Facility, staff and employees can respond and recover the device before it can be removed from the building or taken into an off-limits area.

I know that the stories I referenced were about break-ins and my point was to demonstrate that devices that have or potentially have patient information can be stolen and place patients at risk. But consider that on February 8, 2017 a criminal stole several iPads from the lobby of Leamington District Memorial Hospital. On March 23, 2016, two iPads were stolen from Hawke’s Bay Fallen Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital’s Children’s Ward according to OURHEALTH Hawke’s Bay’s website. The article states, “…the two stolen iPads – one belonging to the Hospital Play Specialist Service and the other the property of the Medical Team in the Children’s Ward.” These stories are reminders that iPad theft and medical tablet theft is a real problem and if not protected there is a good chance someone will try to steal them and the patient information they contain.

The job of the medical providers is to care for their patients. Take care of their health and their patient information. Place a Bug Tag on each of your iPads and tablets and an EAS tower at all of your entrances and off-limit areas. 

 

Get more information on iPad Theft, contact us or call 1.866.914.2567 today.

        
      

 

 

Don’t Have A Heart Attack Over The Use Of Alpha Bug Tags To Protect Mobile Medical Devices From Theft, EAS Won’t Interfere With Pacemakers

Alpha Bug Tag-3                                                                                                                   WC Blog 350
i-Pad theft-3
Don’t Have A Heart Attack Over The Use Of Alpha Bug Tags To Protect Mobile Medical Devices From Theft, EAS Won’t Interfere With Pacemakers
     When I worked as a Retail Loss Prevention Manager our store was located in a place where retirees would often move to for the winter in order to escape the cold.  One of the questions I was asked on a fairly regular basis was if our electronic article surveillance (EAS) system would interfere with pacemakers. Customers were concerned about the tags we used but they were really fearful of the EAS pedestals since they were located right at the doors to the building. I would try to reassure them that there was no health concerns associated with the system and after a few minutes that was usually enough to allay any trepidations the customers might have had. There were some though that no matter how much time I spent trying to reassure them they could not get over that hurdle. That is why the question was posed to me more often than it may have been to a peer somewhere else. Studies have been done that show there is minimal chance EAS could interfere with pacemakers and similar medical devices. Stores aren’t the only place the technology is used.  It is important for healthcare providers to understand this as they consider the need to protect mobile medical devices from tablet theft of i-Pad theft. 
     Many medical offices from general practitioners to dentists are realizing the advantages of using mobile technology to improve patient care, share information with patients and protect records. Loose papers and stray clipboards are slowly being replaced with an i-Pad or a tablet. Patients are now using these devices to register new accounts including all of their personal information but now it is quickly accessed at the touch of a button. The down side is that if one of these mobile devices is stolen there is a chance client information can be accessed by criminals. Many offices that have made the switch to technology over paper have taken steps to protect the mobile units with an Alpha Bug Tag attached to a device and set up EAS towers at the doors. When protected devices are carried into the detection field of the towers, alarms alert employees and who then prevent an i-Pad theft from taking place. The tags are also tamper proof which prevents a thief from being able to remove an anti-theft device and steal a tablet. Attempts to pry a tag off of a device sets off an alarm built into the Alpha Bug Tag again foiling efforts of someone trying to steal protected information.
     The safety of electronic article surveillance on pacemakers has been documented many times. For instance the American Heart Association on their website www.heart.org states, “Interactions with EAS systems are unlikely to cause clinically significant symptoms in most patients.” On the other hand, with regard to MP3 players the website says, “Most contain a magnetic substance and research has documented that placing the headphones too close to the pacemaker caused interference.”  Another concern is raised with power- generating equipment, arc welding equipment and powerful magnets. The site continues, “Such as found in some medical devices, heavy equipment or motors can inhibit pulse generators.” On their website, hopkinsmedicine.org, Johns Hopkins Hospital article for potential patients, “Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) Insertion” provides the caution, “Anti-Theft systems or electronic article surveillance (EAS) used in department stores may interact with an ICD. The American Heart Association recommends you should not lean on or stand in this equipment but should pass quickly through the detection system.” 
     There is potentially more risk involved in a visit to a doctor’s office or hospital from the medical equipment in those facilities than that associated with EAS. The American Heart Association warns of interference from MRI’s, Radio Frequency Ablation (a medical procedure that uses radio waves to manage a variety of arrhythmias) and Short-wave or microwave diathermy (a medical procedure that uses high-frequency, high-intensity signals for physical therapy). Each of these can disrupt or damage the pacemaker a patient is carrying. 
     The point I am making is that medical providers should adapt mobile devices in the practice to improve service and save time. Any concern over i-Pad theft or tablet theft and the compromise of protected patient information can be laid to rest with the use of Alpha Bug Tags and EAS technology. Patients who may have pacemakers need not worry about interference with their devices.
Need information on Alpha Bug Tags? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now.

When I worked as a Retail Loss Prevention Manager our store was located in a place where retirees would often move to for the winter in order to escape the cold.  One of the questions I was asked on a fairly regular basis was if our electronic article surveillance (EAS) system would interfere with pacemakers. Customers were concerned about the tags we used but they were really fearful of the EAS pedestals since they were located right at the doors to the building. I would try to reassure them that there was no health concerns associated with the system and after a few minutes that was usually enough to allay any trepidations the customers might have had. There were some though that no matter how much time I spent trying to reassure them they could not get over that hurdle. That is why the question was posed to me more often than it may have been to a peer somewhere else. Studies have been done that show there is minimal chance EAS could interfere with pacemakers and similar medical devices. Stores aren’t the only place the technology is used.  It is important for healthcare providers to understand this as they consider the need to protect mobile medical devices from tablet theft of i-Pad theft. 
     

Many medical offices from general practitioners to dentists are realizing the advantages of using mobile technology to improve patient care, share information with patients and protect records. Loose papers and stray clipboards are slowly being replaced with an i-Pad or a tablet. Patients are now using these devices to register new accounts including all of their personal information but now it is quickly accessed at the touch of a button. The down side is that if one of these mobile devices is stolen there is a chance client information can be accessed by criminals. Many offices that have made the switch to technology over paper have taken steps to protect the mobile units with an Alpha Bug Tag attached to a device and set up EAS towers at the doors. When protected devices are carried into the detection field of the towers, alarms alert employees and who then prevent an i-Pad theft from taking place. The tags are also tamper proof which prevents a thief from being able to remove an anti-theft device and steal a tablet. Attempts to pry a tag off of a device sets off an alarm built into the Alpha Bug Tag again foiling efforts of someone trying to steal protected information.
     

The safety of electronic article surveillance on pacemakers has been documented many times. For instance the American Heart Association on their website www.heart.org states, “Interactions with EAS systems are unlikely to cause clinically significant symptoms in most patients.” On the other hand, with regard to MP3 players the website says, “Most contain a magnetic substance and research has documented that placing the headphones too close to the pacemaker caused interference.”  Another concern is raised with power- generating equipment, arc welding equipment and powerful magnets. The site continues, “Such as found in some medical devices, heavy equipment or motors can inhibit pulse generators.” On their website, hopkinsmedicine.org, Johns Hopkins Hospital article for potential patients, “Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) Insertion” provides the caution, “Anti-Theft systems or electronic article surveillance (EAS) used in department stores may interact with an ICD. The American Heart Association recommends you should not lean on or stand in this equipment but should pass quickly through the detection system.” 
     

There is potentially more risk involved in a visit to a doctor’s office or hospital from the medical equipment in those facilities than that associated with EAS. The American Heart Association warns of interference from MRI’s, Radio Frequency Ablation (a medical procedure that uses radio waves to manage a variety of arrhythmias) and Short-wave or microwave diathermy (a medical procedure that uses high-frequency, high-intensity signals for physical therapy). Each of these can disrupt or damage the pacemaker a patient is carrying. 
     

The point I am making is that medical providers should adapt mobile devices in the practice to improve service and save time. Any concern over i-Pad theft or tablet theft and the compromise of protected patient information can be laid to rest with the use of Alpha Bug Tags and EAS technology. Patients who may have pacemakers need not worry about interference with their devices.

 

Need information on Alpha Bug Tags? Give us a call at 1.866.914.2567 now.