News, Announcements, & Education

Safer Internet Day

Be part of Safer Internet Day to create a safer online world for patients and families

Online safety is more important than ever. Over the past year Kiwis have spent a record amount of time online, which also means the chances of online harm have also increased.  New Zealand’s online safety organisation Netsafe has observed “scam loss reports increase by 69 percent, reports from educators skyrocket 58 percent, requests for help with digital…
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January 28 is Data Privacy Day

Celebrate Data Privacy Day by taking simple steps to protect patient information

January 28 is Data Privacy Day, an international effort to create awareness about privacy and protecting data. It is hosted by the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP), partnered with StaySafeOnline.org. The health sector is in the top five industries for cyber-attacks because the data we hold is sensitive and is therefore more valuable to hackers. Fortunately, there are easy steps you can take to protect patient data.   CERT NZ…
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Do you still use a fax machine?

As many of you know, the Ministry of Health (Ministry) is supporting the health and disability sector to transition away from analogue fax machines. Patients First is working with the Ministry by doing a stocktake of fax machine usage amongst PHOs and GP Practices. We wanted to give you a heads up about this work,…
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Dr Sarah Clarke

Dr Sarah Clarke brings clinical experience to Patients First Board

The Board of Patients First is pleased to announce their newest member, Dr Sarah Clarke. Sarah has 20 years’ experience in the health sector and is a dual trained specialist in Rural Hospital Medicine and Urgent Care, with experience working across general practice and hospital medicine. Sarah is based in Canterbury, though she has part-time…
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hMael products to be discontinued at the end of January 2021

Patients First will discontinue the hMael products from 29 January 2021, Chief Executive Mark Corbitt confirmed today.   “We’re disappointed that we can no longer provide hMael, especially because it provides more protection than standard email services. But, as a charitable organisation, we need to focus our funding on core products and services”, Mr Corbitt said. Patients First receives funding from the Ministry of Health to…
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Stethoscope on laptop keyboard

The importance of software updates in healthcare

Software updates can be annoying. They appear out of nowhere at inconvenient times and they seem to take twice as long as they claim. And if you’re stuck with legacy systems, it is not as simple as a click of a button. But we suspect a team of people at Public Health England will have learnt how using outdated software applications can have…
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Doctor giving telehealth consultation to patient

4 tips for securing internet-connected devices in healthcare

The convergence of internet and healthcare comes with its benefits and risks for both patients and health providers. Securing internet-connected devices in healthcare is critical to keep patient information safe. We’ve only just started to scratch the surface of how many lives we can change with telehealth, digital health records, internet-connected medical devices, wellness apps,…
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two-factor-authentication

Protect patient privacy with two-factor authentication

One of the easiest and simplest things you can do to protect patient privacy is to add two-factor authentication (2FA) to your account logins. Our friends at CERT NZ explain that 2FA “verifies you are who you say you are, by asking for a second piece of information (often a code) as well as a password.”    Patients all around New Zealand…
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Cyber Smart Week 2020

CERT NZ’s annual Cyber Smart Week for 2020 starts on Monday 19 October and is aimed at helping New Zealanders protect themselves online. Patients First will be participating in this initiative to help raise cybersecurity awareness across New Zealand while also making it relevant to the health sector. New Zealand Health Information Security Requirements The…
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Step up your cyber defence

Step up your cyber defence and stay safe from cyber attacks

Editorial provided by CERT NZ as part of Cyber Smart Week 2020. We all do it – ignore those pesky red dots and update messages; not quite get around to changing our password practice; forget to check we’re not sharing our personal information with every Dom, Jack and Hēmi on social media. Well, now’s the…
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What you need to know about the new Privacy Act 2020

This article is based on the NZ Privacy Law Changes 2020 & Security Protections Webinar by Connon Daly (General Manager, The I.T. Team) and Graeme Crombie (Partner, Lane Neave). For full information and resources on the Privacy Act 2020, please visit the Privacy Commissioner website.  The new Privacy Act 2020 (Act) comes into force on 1 December 2020 and we want to help you understand what you…
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