Vocera Care Experience Security Protocols

Vocera has developed a secure solution architecture designed to protect the integrity of a facility's Protected Health Information in complliance with HIPAA and HITECH, and the system can be configured to comply with varying state and facility regulations and policies.

Recognizing the obligations set forth by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”), P.L. 104-191, as amended, and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (“HITECH”), Vocera has developed a secure solution architecture designed to protect the integrity, confidentiality and availability of a facility’s Protected Health Information (“PHI”). Additionally, some of the Vocera® Care Experience solution features may be configured for our clients to comply with varying state and facility regulations, policies and procedures.

Architecture

The solution architecture is designed to permit a secure flow of information whether as an upload from the user to the servers or as a response to a query from a user. The solution utilizes end to end encryption to ensure that any PHI is secured during transit or at rest. The solution does not permit the end user to actively manipulate any data stored on the server. The following diagram sets forth the basic solution architecture.

Access

The solution and the associated website may be accessed only by those end users (including patients) and product technicians issued appropriate credentials in the form of a password, PIN, or a combination of both.

• End users are identified by the facility and assigned a unique password. Upon successful entry of a password, a user may then complete a variety of user functions, including uploading patient information or querying the system.

• Patients are issued PINs by the facility upon discharge permitting access to their individual records. Lost PINs may be reissued by the facility.

• Vocera personnel are assigned access privileges based upon their individual roles within the company. Personnel with access privileges must use their unique passwords to gain system access.

All access, whether by end user, patient or Vocera personnel, is logged by the system and appropriate audit logs may be generated upon request.

Server Security

Servers are located at an offsite data center featuring 2N+1 redundancy in Internet, power and telecommunications.

• Audit discharge instructions and other patient communication

• Ensure care instructions are handled consistently throughout the organization

• Stratify patients most at risk to be readmitted

• Monitor staff compliance and competency

• Identify staff recognition and teaching opportunities

Additional security features include:

• Biometric scanners

• Mechanical security

• Alarms

• Video monitoring

• 24/7 human monitoring

• Data storage on encrypted drives across large arrays for additional redundancy

Please note that only certain Vocera personnel are credentialed to access the offsite data center for specific solution support requirements.

Encryption/Secure Transmission

The Vocera Care Experience solution ensures the security of PHI from its inception to its destruction by providing an end to end encryption scheme.

“Data in Transit”—The Vocera Care Experience solution permits the transmission of PHI both between the facility and the server and the patient and the server depending upon the individual query.

From the facility side, the solution may query the server as either the user is uploading information on a particular patient or as part of an automated process. Dependent upon the query either an IPSEC tunnel or an SSL tunnel is used for PHI transmission between the solution and the facility. Both IPSEC tunnels and SSL tunnels are deployed in accordance with the NIST Special Publications 800-77, Guide to IPSEC VPNs and 800-113, Guide to SSL VPNs respectively. Transmission of PHI resulting from a patient query also travels through SSL tunnels similarly deployed.

“Data at Rest” – Data may “rest” in one of three locations within the Vocera Care Experience solution: within the mobile application during creation or retrieval, on the website or on the servers.

The mobile application encryption scheme is designed to rely in part upon the hardware encryption and in part on the application itself. The Good to Go® application within the Vocera Care Experience suite operates on iOS® devices, including iPhone® 3GS, iPod® Touch 4th gen (also 3rd gen 32gb), and iPad® 1. Older versions of iOS devices do not support encryption and will not run the application. To utilize the hardware encryption, Vocera suggests requiring a device lock after a period of inactivity. In addition the application logs users out after a period of inactivity (configurable to facility) and any information not uploaded to the server at the time of log out will automatically be deleted by the application from the mobile device.

PHI at rest on servers is encrypted consistent with the NIST Special Publication 800-11, Guide Storage Encryption Technologies for End User Devices.

Resource Type: Data Sheets
Industry Solution: Healthcare 

Vocera technology has bridged our communication gaps – allowing instant hands-free voice calls, improving patient care coordination, and enhancing staff and patient safety by reducing response times.

Norman Bowman, Clinical Ward Administrator at Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust

The Vocera numbers speak for themselves, and they show this technology can dramatically reduce the time it takes to connect with a colleague and get a response. That has a real impact on the care we provide.

Adrian Plunkett, Paediatric Intensivist Consultant at Birmingham Women’s and Children’s Hospital

Vocera Badges allow our team to safely communicate under PPE during this COVID-19 pandemic.

Victoria Sudron, Service Improvement Coordinator at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust

Since implementing Vocera, we no longer have communication delays due to the ‘page and wait’ scenario.

Nick Roper, Clinical Director at North Tees & Hartlepool NHS Trust
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