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A report published by ACE looked at the “critical risks facing the healthcare industry.” At the 2015 RIMS Conference, we spoke with Caroline Clouser, EVP – ACE Medical Risk Group, about the report, and what it means to healthcare risk managers.

Ms. Clouser mentions several major issues facing the healthcare industry have been in the news lately, including emergency preparedness around pandemics (such as Ebola), an increase in hospital violence, and the impact of data security and privacy.

For healthcare companies, the greatest exposures to loss come from cyber security. According to Ms. Clouser, the FBI says the $3 trillion healthcare industry is lax compared to many others with regard to data security and privacy. Healthcare risk managers are concerned about cyber breaches, including the release of confidential patient information, or the cyber hack of medical equipment or physician orders.

Ms. Clouser sees cyber risk growing much the way environmental liability grew in the 1980s. At one time, environmental insurance was a “throw in coverage” on liability forms.  ACE sees cyber being its own marketplace, growing exponentially into the future.

To help mitigate the risk of cyber, Ms. Clouser advises clients to develop policies and procedures that follow HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) policies around data privacy and AMA (American Medical Association) encryption standards. She also points out the importance of training employees as the “first line of defense.”

For read more on the “Critical Risks Facing the Healthcare Industry”, visit the ACE website, or visit the WRIN.tv On Demand Library.

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