Ransomware Attacks are back with a vengeance -this time attacking healthcare facilities who have critical patient data which they cannot afford to lose. Hospitals need patient data quickly without which patient care can become difficult or nearly impossible. Since all patient data is now stored on computers, losing this data is not an option. In just the past few months, the ransomware has attacked millions of computers, locking out their users for days. Recently, computers belonging to Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles, Med-Star Health in DC and Methodist Hospital in Henderson, Kentucky were struck; Hollywood hospital had to pay close to $20,000 in bitcoins to unlock the computers.The people who have created this virus are one step ahead- they ask for payment usually in bitcoins so tracing can be difficult.Ransomware is a lucrative business for criminals, and the attackers have become very sophisticated in developing the cryptware, which encrypts files on a machine using a private key that only the attackers possess, instead of simply locking the computer or keyboard.In such situations, can technology help hospitals and clinics still care for the sick and wounded when they have no access to their EMR? The Smartphone is a modern technology marvel, spearheaded by Apple with Google and the rest following, that could help compensate for the high ratio of patients to healthcare personnel during ransomware attacks.
With over two decades of technology entrepreneurship background, Krishna Kurapati started QliqSOFT with the strong desire to solve clinical collaboration and workflow challenges in US Healthcare. During the late 90s, Krishna co-founded IPCell to build the first Cable IP Telephony switch, eventually selling the company to Cisco Systems. In 2003, he started Sipera (acquired by Avaya Systems) to solve security issues for Unified Communications' and raised over $30MM in venture funding. Additionally, he has been actively involved in the early-stage financing of startups in both the US and India.
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Symptom checkers can increase patient access by providing guidance and visit qualification checks 24 hours a day. They break down barriers by providing patients with the information they need most during those times when it can be difficult to reach a provider. The tools are also helping prevent misdiagnoses in these situations.
It is critical that underserved populations receive the care they deserve, as the global community continues to wrestle with the pandemic. Here at QliqSOFT, we are aware of the communication gap that too often exists in hospitals and clinics, ultimately keeping individuals from preventative and life-saving care.