There are three reasons why healthcare organizations need a HIPAA compliant hospital paging solution. Naturally the first of these is compliance with the Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The second reason is to reduce costs, and the third is to implement a solution that takes advantage of modern technology to increase productivity.
HIPAA compliance is a big issue. Pager systems are only HIPAA compliant provided that no unencrypted identifying details of a patient are sent across a pager network. For healthcare organizations still using unencrypted pagers, the cost of implementing a HIPAA compliant hospital paging solution by changing from unencrypted to encrypted pager messaging would be colossal.
Even maintaining an existing non-compliant pager system – and not using it to transmit protected health information (PHI) – can be expensive. A recent study conducted by HIMSS Analytics found that large healthcare organizations were spending on average $179,000 per year for pager systems in hospitals – an average of $8.40 per device, per month for a typical hospital with 100 beds or more.
The third issue – taking advantage of modern technology to increase productivity – is something that many legacy pager systems are incapable of doing. Back in 2013, CNN Money described pagers as “archaic communication technology” and claimed that pagers were costing the healthcare industry billions of dollars each year.