Developments in technology has meant that healthcare providers are digitalising their healthcare records, and care homes are discovering huge benefits from doing so. With new technology, carers now have the ability to instantly access resident data and information wherever they are and on a variety of devices, allowing them to improve efficiency and spend more time effectively caring for their residents. However, in order to ensure that care homes maintain their efficiency of providing a high level of care, it’s essential that a routine is in place for all their files to be reliably backed up.
Regularly backing up your files is good practice regardless, but with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) that came into effect on 25th May 2018, there’s even more reason for care homes to back up their files and ensure GDPR compliance. One of the most important steps to take in order to protect information is to habitually back up, and failing to comply with the new regulations can result in strong penalties and reputational damage.
What is a Backup?
In simple terms, a backup is an exact copy of a file, record or piece of information. All healthcare records and data a care home stores should be backed up and stored in a different place, so that if data loss occurs at one storage location, the files haven’t been completely lost and can still be accessed through another medium. Popular places to store duplicate files include external hard drives and cloud storage services.
Why Should Healthcare Records be Backed Up?
The process of backing up a care home’s data is often an afterthought and can be pushed towards the bottom of a to-do list, but it’s something that must be integrated within a care home’s routine in order to prepare for any unforeseeable losses. Records can be destroyed in numerous ways, and sometimes they are completely unavoidable.
One of the most common causes of data loss is due to hardware or system malfunctions. It can be caused by several factors, including electrical faults, physical damage and water damage, and often results in permanent loss.
Viruses and malware are other possible cause of data loss. As well as slowing down the speed of your computer or tablet, it can spread rapidly and cause either partial of complete damage to your healthcare records. Installing a reliable antivirus is advised on all your devices, but it’s best to also back up files just to be extra safe!
Natural disasters, such as fires, floods and earthquakes, are both unpredictable and uncontrollable, and can lead to the loss of data. Cloud storage is an effective method of preparing for damage/loss by natural disasters or burglary, but if you also have backups on external hardware, such as a USB memory stick, it’s recommended that the hardware is kept at a different (but equally secure) site to where the original records are kept.
If a healthcare provider were to lose their records, the consequences would be disastrous. For example, carers would no longer have access to each resident’s care plan, which in turn will have a detrimental impact on the health and wellbeing of the residents.
How CareDocs Makes Backups Easy
Making sure that all of a care home’s healthcare records and information is securely protected is one of our priorities here at CareDocs. Our intuitive and GDPR-compliant cloud care management system has been designed to assist care home managers and their staff with the day-to-day running of the home, and enables carers to have quick and easy access to any information concerning a particular resident.
Using the latest and most advanced technology, our cloud-based software constantly backs up all files stored on its database. The innovative software creates full, differential and transaction log backups every 5-10 minutes, depending on the performance level and amount of database activity. This ensures that in the unfortunate event of data loss, the database will be able to be restored to a specific point-in-time, preventing the care home from losing all information regarding their residents.
However, we also supply a USB backup memory stick to our customers so that all records can be stored on a physical device in a secure location, as well as in the cloud. Reminders are frequently sent to users when a backup is required, making sure that they never forget to manually back up their files.
With the right kind of care management solution, care homes can ensure that all of their records are backed up effectively. For more information about CareDocs’ reputable cloud-based care management system, please get in touch with a member of our friendly team today.