The healthcare sector faces challenges when it comes to patient confidentiality. The widespread use of physical fax machines produces various risks to document security.
Sending paper faxes using physical fax machines can lead to:
Faxing as a practice though, cannot be removed from the healthcare system. It is too valuable, important and entrenched in our day-to-day communications.
But faxing isn’t the problem, the physical fax machine is.
Removing the physical fax machine and switching to faxing in the digital cloud era helps to reduce the risks of breaching patient confidentiality. Digital cloud faxing is the upgrade from the physical fax machine which allows for the continuation of sharing vital documentation. But how can you achieve this?
Digital faxing presents healthcare organisations with the opportunity to keep faxing, while helping to decrease the risks associated with using a physical fax machine.
eFax corporate online faxing solutions enables:
Access to online faxing is immediate. Your practice can upgrade its data management at low cost, without the need to change hardware or update IT systems.
Online faxing ensures universal and comprehensive faxing solutions. Send faxes to, and receive faxes from, anyone in the industry, whether they use digital faxing platforms or physical fax machines.
This year, it was reported that 150,000 patients had their data used without consent for research purposes. Additionally, it was only last year that it was revealed that 700,000 patient documents went missing. Given the tightening pressure from the NHS Digital and the introduction of the GDPR, minimising the chances of data breaches and the impact they can have on patients is more important than ever.
To that end, you need to be thinking about ways to reduce the risk factors. With the NHS revealing there is a lack of funding and support, which, by extension, also impacts others operating in the healthcare sector. That said, there are options available to help decrease some of those risks, such as online faxing with eFax corporate.
The fax is an integral part of communication within the health and social care sector. Within the NHS itself, around 9,000 fax machines are regularly used, and that is only within the NHS. When looking outwards to associated organisations and businesses — operating in dentistry, pharmaceuticals, mental health, etc. — you’ll find the number of machines within the industry is much higher. The use of physical fax machines in the health and social care sector has not gone unnoticed, with many professionals in the industry calling for trusts and practices to “axe the fax”.
Is this really necessary?
You work in healthcare, so you know the benefits of faxing within the sector. We need it within the healthcare sector, not least because it facilitates the sending and receiving of important files, such as records, orders and prescriptions, it enables the transmission of legally binding documents and signatures. Yet, while faxing as a concept is important for current processes, and indeed has its future in the healthcare sector, the physical fax machine does present major issues in terms of security and confidentiality in health and social care.
Fax machines as a technology are over 100 years old, designed and conceived in the late 19th century. They’ve moved on a bit since then, but not enough to catch up with the modern era and the threats posed to patient data in the 21st century.
Therefore, while fax as a method of sending documents remains a viable and important method of communication, the physical hardware they are so often sent from presents many risks.
But what exactly are the risks of using fax machines?
The physical fax machine is a threat to patient data and a significant risk factor in terms of security breaches. But, as we’ve established, faxing as a communication method is essential for those in health and social care, providing valuable and numerous benefits.
It’s time to eradicate the physical fax machine and upgrade to online faxing in the cloud.
Online faxing is essentially a more secure alternative to the physical fax machine. Through the use of digital technology, it enables continued fax communication while lessening some of the associated risks posed by faxing with a physical fax machine.
But how does it reduce some of the risks associated with outdated fax machine technology?
Online faxing is the answer to your fax machine woes. It offers a more secure method for sending your health and social care data. But what exactly is online faxing?
Online faxing is a new-age answer to fax communication. It’s the next step in the evolution of the technology. It works very simply by using digital platforms, instead of archaic analogue ones, to transmit documentation from one device to another.
You send faxes through a computer or smart device, such as a tablet or phone. You can transmit both digital files already stored on a computer, such as jpegs, PDFs and word documentsd, or you can capture a physical file using a camera and send it as an image. Online faxing with eFax corporate also features digital signature capability, so no more printing, scanning and filing paper documents!
Faxes can be sent to other online fax services and to physical fax machines. Those who operate the traditional fax machines can continue to send you fax documents. This ensures total connectivity and comprehensive communication channels across the healthcare sector, while providing a more secure method of sending and receiving your documents than those using traditional fax machines within the industry.