Patients harmed by medical device breaches

Technology has pioneered changes in the field of healthcare, especially with telehealth products. There are significant benefits of telehealth solutions. But, technology can pose unexpected challenges. One such challenge that has been revealed is that as many as 1,000 patients have suffered from medical devices affected by a cybersecurity attack. This major revelation has been made by a new survey of executives of device manufacturers and provider organizations.

This survey was conducted by researchers in the University of California, San Diego. Out of 40 executives who belonged to the largest device vendors and provider organizations, two of them mentioned that 100-1000 patients were harmed due to an unreported adverse event that was connected with a medical device cybersecurity issue.

20% of respondents didn’t implement new policies, which were mentioned by the Food and Drug Administration’s pre and postmarket cybersecurity guidance. This includes rules and regulations that are necessary to meet the quality system regulations. The same percentage of respondents mentioned that they had no plans to implement these new policies.

The shelf life of underlying technology is only 3-4 years. Thus, making it difficult to support updates beyond this time frame.