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terms privacy, security, and confidentiality

The terms privacy, security, and confidentiality are not the same, and often confused.  Privacy refers to patients having the ability to control or restrict access to their protected health information, and ability to correct information in the record. Security refers to the infrastructure being secure from interference, such as denial of service attacks, viruses, destruction of information in the database, and so on. Confidentiality refers to protecting health information about the person. “Privacy speaks to the rights of patients” (Nelson & Staggers, 2018, p. 437). In contrast, “confidentiality speaks to the responsibility of healthcare providers” (Nelson & Staggers, 2018, p. 437) to keep patient health information private, even within an organization. 

As a doctorally-prepared nurse, what challenges have you noticed in your organization in regard to privacy, security, and confidentiality?  Did you know the differences between the terms?  How are these different aspects addressed?  For example, do you see patient’s being aware of their rights to correct misinformation in their record?


Nelson, R., & Staggers, N. (2018). Health informatics: An interprofessional approach (2nded.). Missouri: Elsevier


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