Challenges

  • Microsoft Outlook Integration
  • Efficient Workflow
  • HIPAA/HITECH Compliance
  • Secure Storage and Journaling
  • Ability to send Secure Large Files

Solution

Protected Trust provided a secure, compliant email solution which integrated with Microsoft Outlook® based workflow, required negligible implementation effort, and allowed greater control over communication of client and patient information.

"Protected Trust has given Practice Wise the confidence that only intended recipients have access to their private email. A confidence that McGovern shares with others in their industry as both “awesome and highly recommended.”

Email Encryption Solution Secures Protected Health Information

Organization: Practice Wise, LLC
Industry: Healthcare
Location: Wilsonville, OR(Portland Metro Area), US

Practice Wise, LLC was founded in 2003 by Julie McGovern. Ms. McGovern realized that there was a lack of clear communication and understanding between information technology vendors and the practices they served. She has been able to bridge that gap successfully for hundreds of doctors and their support teams.

The Challenge

Practice Wise, LLC needed a secure email solution, one that integrated with their preferred email client, that would enable transmission and communication of sensitive client data, such as patient records. Further, because the healthcare industry is regulated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and other privacy and security rules Practice Wise needed a solution that would meet or exceed these sector requirements.

The Protected Trust Solution

Practice Wise, LLC researched other options for secure email. Most were insufficient because they lacked the workflow integration Practice Wise needed. Protected Trust provided an Outlook® application that was simple to install and implement. The solution was also fully compliant with government-imposed industry regulations, provided for storage and journaling, large file sizes, and gave advanced features for recipient access.

Workflow Integration

Healthcare providers are under increasing pressure to produce a more efficient, compliant, secure workflow to handle all aspects of client communications. Industry liabilities, government regulations, and staffing costs drive providers to continually leverage better processes for communicating critical information and building trusting relationship with clients.

Practice Wise recognized this need to keep its own client data protected with minimal impact to the efficiencies of its current workflow. Protect Trust offers the use of existing email accounts, access to secure email from existing webmail, smartphone, tablet or – most important to Practice Wise – use of the Protected Trust add-in for Microsoft Outlook® for seamless integration.

Julie McGovern, CEO of Practice Wise, points out that, “Implementation was painless.” With simple downloads and minimal start-up time their staff were able to fully integrate secure email using their existing Microsoft Outlook® mail clients. Their clients didn’t have to register to receive secured emails and could reply securely and easily. I.T. did not need to change corporate infrastructure, and almost no training was needed.

Industry Regulations

Government regulation has always been part of the “cost of doing business” for the healthcare industry. In the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act of 2009 (HITECH), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was appointed by the U.S. Congress to issue regulations requiring breach notifications for unsecured protected health information (PHI). Only encryption and destruction are approved methods to render PHI secure. Because of this, basic access controls and firewalls are not enough to secure PHI.

Protected Trust provides strong security features with respect to both encryption (256-bit AES), authentication, and certification to satisfy the legal and ethical requirements found in security and privacy regulations, such as HITECH and HIPAA found in the healthcare sector.

Service and Support

Practice Wise was pleased with the customer support received upon implementation and appreciated the minimum interruption to on-going workflow. Training was provided to employees and augmented with additional information through the support website and blog.

The level of customer support also extends to user issues that can’t be handled in- house. Protected Trust’s support team, located in central Florida, immediately assigns a case number for tracking and begins working on a resolution. If needed, Protected Trust can remotely access an end user’s computer in order to solve problems.

Conclusion

All emails are stored for a pre-determined length of time on Protected Trust: Envoy servers so they can be accessed as needed in the future. How long they need to be accessed varies significantly from industry to industry. Some businesses need no more than 90 days of secure storage; others may need 10 years of storage.

Protected Trust: Envoy has given Practice Wise the confidence that only intended recipients have access to their private email. A confidence that McGovern shares with others in their industry as both “awesome and highly recommended.”