Have you ever looked at the Apple Health app on your iPhone, or consulted your Fitbit to see how many steps you took today? Maybe you’ve been tracking your sleep or heart rate with a smartwatch?
Most of us have begun to see how we can gather enormous amounts of data about our own health through technology. Our trips to the doctor’s office or hospital are also increasingly digitized with iPads and tablets taking the place of old-fashioned medical files.
Healthcare data is an increasingly important target for cybercriminals and any major breach of unsecured protected health information is required by law to be reported to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Civil Rights. There has been an upward trend in data breaches over the years, with 2018 seeing more data breaches reported than any other year since records first started being published.
In the last 24 months, there have been over 400 breaches of healthcare data reported to the DHHS that affected hundreds of people.
In a world where technology is capturing millions of health-related data points from people in both personal and healthcare settings like doctors’ offices and hospitals, the security, management, and privacy of this data becomes more and more important. This is why new careers and job opportunities are opening up at the heart of this tech disruption within the healthcare industry: the security of digital health data.
Check Out These 4 Career Opportunities in the World of Digital Health
As the healthcare industry transforms, more and more organizations are realizing the enormous importance and potential of health data and health data security. Employers need skilled candidates to fill roles related to health data management.
Here’s a rundown of four types of roles that are opening up in the world of digital health.
1. Digital Health Data Scientist
A Digital Health Data Scientist takes the massive amount of data generated in a healthcare setting and is responsible for cleaning up and making sense of that data through quantitative analysis, analysis of patterns and trends, and the presentation of key findings to others in the organization. Data security is a major part of the job of the data scientist with a strong emphasis on the privacy of health records.
A Digital Health Data Scientist has the opportunity to impact patient health directly by finding patterns and trends in data that lead to new insights for care while ensuring the privacy of individual data points.
2. Information Security Engineer
An Information Security Engineer is typically responsible for monitoring, managing, and safeguarding IT systems in order to protect them from hacking or other forms of cyberattacks. Physical and cloud-based systems and networks must remain useable to those who rely on them but protected from cybercriminals.
The Information Security Engineer role is crucial in protecting the overall integrity of patient data throughout the health information technology system.
3. Medical Device Security Analyst
A Medical Device Security Analyst oversees the security of medical devices throughout their use. It is their job to ensure devices are up to medical security standards, monitor or patch any security issues, and communicate with both device vendors and device stakeholders in order to ensure complete privacy and security of the data gathered.
A Medical Device Security Analyst is able to see all sides of the healthcare system, from physical devices to vendors of devices all the way through patient data and interaction.
4. Cybersecurity Policy Analyst
A Cybersecurity Policy Analyst creates and modifies the organization’s cybersecurity policies to ensure the medical establishment is in compliance with the laws and regulations, that are standard in the highly regulated healthcare industry.
The work of a Cybersecurity Policy Analyst ensures the privacy of health data whether in the organization, transferring the data securely to related businesses such as billing organizations, and from external medical devices.
If you are interested in the field of cybersecurity and want to be at the heart of an evolving field, look no further than the world of digital health. With the right training and experience, you will be prepared to manage, analyze, and protect sensitive health information in any number of potential roles with excellence. As an added bonus, your work will have a sense of mission and service; after all, you are helping improve care, safety, and ease of use for patients.
Marymount University’s Master’s in Cybersecurity and Specialization in Digital Health
Wondering how to break into the field?
The master's in Cybersecurity at Marymount University is designed primarily for working professionals. Through online and in-person course offerings, students are able to obtain their graduate degree while continuing to work. Frequently, students of this program are working within the cybersecurity or information technology industry. This enables students to apply the skills they are learning in the classroom to real-world situations. Students are prepared to secure jobs with the federal government, state and local governments, hospitals, nonprofits, or industry. Marymount faculty are highly connected within the industry and frequently assist students with their career preparation.
Marymount’s specialization track in Digital Health offers students a strong understanding of the fundamentals of data security in healthcare services and the proper protocols for securing data generated through medical devices and via electronic healthcare documents. Because of the significant need for cybersecurity in digital health systems, students will feel confident in their ability to securely store and manage healthcare data protecting patient privacy.
If you are ready to set yourself apart as a highly valued cybersecurity professional with the skills and experience to help organizations store and manage health data with integrity, check out our digital resource to learn more about this specialization or request more information about our program. We look forward to helping you start your next academic venture!