Business & Technology

How to Support Healthy Communities During National Health IT Week 2019

By Fortinet | September 17, 2019

Established by HIMSS and the Institute for e-Policy, the annual U.S. National Health IT (NHIT) Week focuses on advancing change within healthcare systems through the use of information technology. This nationwide week of action includes several events and activities led by leaders in the healthcare space. These stakeholders collaborate with top IT professionals to bring about actionable outcomes that give power to advancements in information and technology and transform global healthcare.

This year's NHIT Week will take place September 23-27 and will focus on the theme: Supporting Healthy Communities.

Supporting Healthy Communities

NHIT Week 2019 is focused on driving advancements in health and wellness to promote global health equity. Information and technology leaders will help catalyze transformations in healthcare and develop healthy communities through the following points of engagement:

Fostering Public and Population Health

Overcoming the problems that drive health inequality will be critical in the support of healthy communities. Traditionally, the role of advancing both public and population health has fallen on state and local government health departments. However, communities today must also learn how to identify connections between mobile, telehealth, and social media technologies to assist in promoting those healthy lifestyles, to prevent and respond to chronic illnesses and infectious diseases, and improve the health of the community at large.

Modernizing Health Infrastructure

Public health surveillance is a system by which government health agencies, healthcare providers, and the public work together to detect, report, and prevent poor health outcomes. It provides for the continuous and systematic collection and analysis of health data that can be used to facilitate public health interventions.

However, the current system relies on dated surveillance methods which hinder the detection of and response to new threats to public health. As a result, it’s important that the IT community commits to developing modern, interoperable public health data systems that leverage integrated security programs to more effectively collect and correlate data in order to save more lives. This effort will require cooperation between federal and state policymakers, healthcare providers, and leaders in IT to enable and promote the implementation of these systems.

Developing the Workforce

Establishing a modern public health workforce is an essential piece in harnessing the power of new health IT systems. To realize the full potential of these technologies, a robust and diverse workforce trained with both clinical and technical backgrounds is imperative. Security and technology leaders must work to overcome the cybersecurity skills gap in order to accelerate the development of a modern health information technology workforce without compromising the security of the data and resources being used.

Enabling Better Accessibility to Broadband and Telehealth

Access to trustworthy and affordable broadband and telehealth services is critical to supporting healthy communities, especially in rural areas and for underserved populations. However, across the U.S., there is a great disparity in broadband access which can negatively impact patient health as well as the ability of providers to care for them. This, in turn, can undermine healthcare in these communities. Addressing this challenge requires consistent and stable broadband and telehealth access. Fortunately, this can be facilitated through wireless WAN and SD-WAN deployments, and these technologies should be a goal of the public health workforce moving forward.

Fortinet's Commitment to Health IT

At Fortinet, we are dedicated to meeting the critical security needs of today's global health organizations. We’ve developed a number of integrated, scalable solutions that combine industry-leading performance with integrated layers of protection to better protect the healthcare industry. Fortinet's Healthcare Solution delivers centralized security, advanced threat protection, internal segmentation through the use of Next-Generation Firewalls, and unified threat management through a single-pane-of-glass management view. This strategic approach provides seamless distributed healthcare while ensuring you never have to choose between performance and security.

We are also committed to continuing to provide powerful patient data protection with end-to-end security as healthcare technology evolves into the 21st century.

Final Thoughts

Fortinet is a proud partner of National Health IT Week and is committed to supporting healthy communities by providing advanced security solutions for the healthcare industry. We encourage your organization to become an NHIT Week 2019 partner and join us in our charge to catalyze change in healthcare technology.

What: U.S. NHIT Week 2019

When: September 23rd - 27th, 2019

More Information: healthitweek.org

Read more about Fortinet cybersecurity solutions for healthcare. 

Read these customer case studies to see how Enzo Biochem and Bridgeway Senior Healthcare are using Fortinet’s Security Fabric to protect their patient’s data and secure endpoints.