in HIPAA Headlines by John Brewer

Many times I take things for granted.

Like, how much the general public understand about internet access.

This week the Wall Street Journal had an article that floored me.
The article covered the fact that in locations where many people access the internet through the same router, they can get very slow internet speed.
I read this article and finished with the very scholarly comment, to myself, of “duh!”

When my father forwarded me the article as “interesting” I realized I needed to get off my technical knowledge high-horse and do some explaining.

But wait – how does this apply to HIPAA?

I’ve written previously about “the cloud”.

This is closely related.

If you choose to use a “cloud-based” EHR, then you better ensure you drastically upgrade your broadband.

Let me see if I can draw you a picture:
If you have a sprinkler system at your house, you typically do not turn on more than one “zone” at a time.  If you were to turn on the sprinkler in both the front and back yard, not much water would be coming out.  Yet, if you only run one sprinkler zone, the water sprays as high as it should.

Why?  Only so much water can travel through your pipe to the city water system.

Internet works the same way.

Your business account is set at a certain speed.

One person accessing this will get great speed.  15 people accessing this will have a much slower experience.

In order to fix this, you need to get a bigger internet “pipe”.

Guess what?  This costs more money.

If you are allowing patients to access your wireless network…they are slowing you down also.

The point here is to understand that internet access has finite limits, and the Wall Street Journal article highlighted the fact that many smart people don’t grasp this reality, nor how to fix the issue.

About John Brewer

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