Healthcare Roundup—Study shows patients harmed by medical device breaches; Harvard Pilgrim CEO resigns

Great Bay Software unveils a platform it claims will deliver unmatched visibility into IoT and medical devices on hospital networks.
A survey of device manufacturers and provider organizations revealed that cyberattacks pose a risk to patients. (Great Bay Software)

New research shows up to 1,000 patients harmed by medical device breaches

As many as 1,000 patients suffered harm from medical devices hit by a cybersecurity attack, according to a new survey of executives of device manufacturers and provider organizations.

The survey, conducted by researchers at the University of California San Diego, is scheduled for publication in an academic journal. The results were announced by Christian Dameff, M.D., an emergency physician and clinical informatics researcher at UCSD at the HIMSS Healthcare Security Forum this week.

Of the 40 executives from some of the largest medical device vendors and provider organizations, two said 100-1,000 patients were harmed during an unreported adverse event associated with a medical device cybersecurity vulnerability. (FierceHealthcare)

Harvard Pilgrim CEO resigns

Citing "behavior," the CEO of the second largest insurer in Massachusetts abruptly resigned this week. Eric Schultz announced his departure from Harvard Pilgrim Health Care after serving as CEO since 2010.

Harvard Pilgrim had been in merger talks with Partners HealthCare. Both Harvard Pilgrim and Partners say Schultz’s resignation will not impact those discussions. (Associated Press article)

AMA adopts policy to improve doc access to mental health care

The American Medical Association announced a new policy to improve physician and medical student access to mental health care resources this week. 

The policy calls on state medical boards to evaluate a physician’s mental and physical health similarly, ensuring that a previously diagnosed mental health illness is not automatically considered as a current impairment to practice. It also calls for increased research into the risk factors for depression, burnout and suicide among medical students. 

The policy is aimed to reduce the fear that the stigma associated with mental illness would impact a doctor's career and keep them from seeking care, officials said. (Release