Inside MERGE

In a world of data breaches, how do you choose a marketing partner you can trust?

BY: Tricia MacKenzie | VP Marketing & Business Development

DataBreaches

Let’s face it: data security is complicated business, especially for the healthcare industry. Keeping data secure at healthcare companies means much more than simple ‘confidentiality,’ and only through a solid combination of people, process and technology can your organization achieve true security – and your best ROI.

 

The requirement for a solid, secure digital foundation at the core of healthcare marketing demands expertise and strong controls at the agency level too, not just for healthcare organizations. It is critical when considering engaging with a marketing partner to trust that the partner or supplier who may touch or have access to patient healthcare information or personally identifiable information meet or exceed the standards for the organization itself.

 

At MERGE, we understand this requirement and have achieved HITRUST CSF certification for the systems we use to accomplish our client work. Developed by a combination of healthcare specialists and IT security professionals and rated by a 2018 HIMSS survey as the most widely adopted framework in the industry, the HITRUST Common Security Framework (CSF) helps businesses by providing the best in class framework for managing the security requirements inherent in handling healthcare organization data. The truth is that we’re all in this together, and at every level, the health care industry, partners and suppliers have to embrace the shift to digital management of personally identifying information, understand the risks involved in this change, and take appropriate steps to manage.

 

 

“Agencies are under growing pressure to meet complex compliance requirements that include technical and process elements such as HIPAA, SSAE/SOC II, NIST, ISO and COBIT. The HITRUST CSF is the gold standard that needs to be met, and MERGE Boston is pleased to be able to demonstrate its commitment to data security for our clients by achieving HITRUST CSF Certification for our systems.”

Andrew Pelosi, President, MERGE Boston

Ignoring data security measures from a partner or supplier is simply not an option – consumers are more concerned about data security and privacy than ever before. A 2018 Aetna Health study showed consumers rated patient privacy and data security as a bigger concern than rising healthcare costs. An overwhelming 80% rated patient privacy as very important, and 76% gave the same ranking to data security overall. Plus, the cost of a data breach for a healthcare organization is the highest of any industry tracked - and still continues to rise, from an average of $380 per record in 2017 to $408 per record in 2018.

 

Now is the time for healthcare organizations to talk about trust, especially around data security, giving their customers the confidence that their data is safe with not only the organization, but through strong and thoroughly vetted partners. Healthcare marketers are rightfully wary about investing in new technology platforms, by working together, our common goal is the common good — protecting information, improving security and minimizing risk. MERGE’s expertise in marketing, healthcare, and data security can help you find the right omnichannel solutions to reach your audience.

 

Contact us today to discuss how our unique blend of strategy, creativity, and technology skills can help you achieve your marketing goals.