Medical Consultants Network Easily Secures Data With Vormetric
Founded in 1985, Medical Consultants Network (MCN) is a national provider of medical judgment services. MCN offers a comprehensive range of review services including Independent Medical Evaluations (IMEs), Peer Reviews, Utilization Reviews, Bill Reviews, Pharmaceutical Reviews, and a broad spectrum of services related to Workers’ Compensation as well as Disability Claims and Auto/Liability claims. For example, when an employee is injured on the job and there are questions regarding their treatment, a state department of labor may ask for an independent doctor to review their history, make healthcare recommendations, and answer specific questions; MCN performs examinations in all 50 states, Washington DC, and Canada.
Originally a regional company based in Seattle, MCN quickly outgrew its northwest roots as it recognized that examinations needed to be near the claimant, and claimants live throughout the U.S. MCN was the first Independent Review Organization (IRO) in its field to create a national network (in 1997) to connect physicians and consultants to claimants and clients. Today, the network encompasses more than 23,000 entities and MCN has offices, staff, and call centers located in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Washington.
MCN links its offices and staff in real-time via a proprietary, secure information system that tracks all service requests and workflows. The company continues to be at the forefront of directly interfacing with clients’ claims systems. Several years ago, given changes due to federal regulations and client needs, and to maintain its best-in-class data integrity protection portfolio, MCN launched an upgrade of its data encryption processes.
William Ellison, MCN’s information security officer, noted, “We track detailed information about various services we perform for individual claimants and specific consultants. The data involved can be very complex because of dealing with so many healthcare entities throughout the United States and the various state and federal laws involved. We have the data broken down so everything is specific to a client and/or claimant, or what we call ‘case service.’”
MCN was unsure it would find an encryption solution that could easily meet all its needs because of its broad portfolio of IT infrastructure components. Ellison commented,
“We have about 70 Microsoft SQL Server databases – ranging in size up to hundreds of gigabytes and tracking information for over 30,000 healthcare providers. It’s a dynamic environment spanning a range of hardware vendors, some virtualized environments, and with several elements moving to the cloud. So we needed an encryption solution that could accommodate securing data in a wide variety of formats and capable of fully embracing our future development plans.”
It turned out that Vormetric Encryption was an easy choice for MCN because of Vormetric’s flexibility and ease of use. Ellison reflected, “Vormetric supports an excellent variety of file formats.”
He added, “It only took the Vormetric consultant a couple of days to fully roll-out the encryption across our production and data recovery site storage devices.”
MCN has a client portal – a secured web interface to its systems – where clients can access the status of their referrals as well as upload records and download reports. “There’s always a worry about malicious attacks but now we feel more comfortable because all of the information is encrypted with Vormetric both in the production databases and back-up files,” stated Ellison.
Today, MCN’s network features secured access to data in a customized encrypted database, compliant with all applicable federal and state laws and meeting all client protocols. It enables clients to upload records, review service status and update information in a secured environment.
“Our experience with Vormetric Encryption has been ‘set and forget,’” said Ellison. “We can move off one database to another and transition from one clustered environment to an alternate one. We simply set up the folders, move the data, and it is all encrypted in the process.”
Securing Data is Seamless and Transparent
Ellison concluded, “From a security standpoint, Vormetric’s solution just works. It was easy to set up and implement, and keeping it going is very simple. It’s never been a distraction and that’s important! As we continue to evolve our environment, I know the data will remain secure with Vormetric.”