In the News: FBI flags risk of outdated medical devices, reasons behind device recalls, and more

Hospital patient sitting on bed looking out window next to IV pump

Every day, healthcare leaders face myriad challenges in running their institutions. From complying with regulations and dealing with financial pressures to ensuring the best patient care possible, leaders in our industry have a lot on their plates.

In addition to all these challenges, leadership must continually stay up to date on the latest news from policy changes to security threats. In this month’s news roundup, we'll look at some recent headlines, including how outdated medical devices can pose a risk to patients, according to the FBI. Plus, we'll highlight the reasons behind medical device recalls in Q2 and offer more insight into security challenges and best practices.

Growing cyber risks add to hospital cost squeeze, Fitch cautions

We all know cyberattacks are on the rise. But now a new report from Fitch Ratings is highlighting that many hospitals may not be prioritizing financial resources dedicated to strengthening security because of tight budgets and increasing pressures to slash operating margins, especially amidst other key challenges including staffing and supply chain shortages. See the results of the report and why it’s becoming increasingly expensive to fend against cybersecurity threats.

FBI spotlights cybersecurity risks of outdated medical devices

In a recent briefing, the FBI noted that a mid-year healthcare cybersecurity analysis found that equipment vulnerable to cyberattacks includes insulin pumps, intracardiac defibrillators, mobile cardiac telemetry, pacemakers, and intrathecal pain pumps. The agency is also reporting that research has found an average of 6.2 vulnerabilities per medical device and that 40% of medical devices at the end-of-life stage offer little to no security patches or upgrades.

Medical device recalls hit two-year high in Q2, report finds

There were 268 recall events last quarter, a 34% increase from the first quarter of 2022. Among the reasons for the recalls, safety concerns, accounting for 48 events in the quarter, were the leading cause followed by software issues in second place, with 47 recall events. Other reasons for recalls were mislabeling, quality and parts issues.

How hospitals can address medical device vulnerabilities

More and more hospitals rely on medical devices and Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) devices to deliver high-quality patient care and improve outcomes. With an average of 10-15 medical devices per bed in a U.S. hospital, a 1,000-bed hospital could have up to 15,000 medical devices to manage. Unfortunately, with the proliferation of medical devices and IoMT comes increased vulnerability. Learn more about the current cybersecurity challenges hospitals are facing and how to tighten up security.

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