Health Privacy Breach Essay

Health Privacy Breach Essay


Analyze the privacy and security issues related to this social media posting.

Privacy breaches are prevalent in healthcare settings. In 2020, privacy breaches increased by around 55% (Jensen & Eg, 2022). Technological advancements and social media have found a home in healthcare settings. Social media use has several benefits in the healthcare sector, but issues regarding security and privacy are still questionable. No policy requires anyone to keep their social media posts confidential. The nurse seems to be frustrated and overwhelmed by the shift. She asks if ‘can this shift be any longer,’ indicating that she is already fed up and wants the shift to end fast. This post was about her duty and did not identify anyone by their name. This is the personal information of the nurse about her shift, and she is responsible for this post.

The nurse has not violated Health Insurance Patient’s Accountability Act. It dictates that nurses should not share identifiable patient information on social media. The act does not explicitly state that nurses should not post information about their shifts on social media; however, they still need to maintain confidentiality and privacy. They should be aware that sharing information that can jeopardize the organization’s privacy and security is unacceptable (Jensen & Eg, 2022). There might be organizational policies that guide social media use among healthcare workers, and nurses are expected to be aware of them. Nurses should understand privacy regulations to avoid a breach of patient confidentiality.

Analyze the privacy and security issues related to the inclusion of patient information on the poster.

Including the patient’s pictures on the poster is not offensive if the nurse educator seeks informed consent and protects their identity and any information that can lead to someone identifying them. In this case, the nurse educator did not seek consent from the patient before posting the picture; this directly affects their right to privacy and informed consent. Before taking any photos of the client, they should be informed about the intent, asked for permission, and guaranteed privacy. The consent should be written to prove that the patient agreed so that the nurse educator can mitigate legal issues (Zimmermann et al., 2021). It is essential for nurses to comprehend the HIPPA regulations regarding patients’ privacy and ensure that images taken under informed consent are kept private and used only for the intended plausible reasons (Kahn, 2020).



Jensen, C. S., & Eg, M. (2022). Confidentiality breaches in hospital: The experiences of young people and parents. Nursing Children and Young People, 34(5).

Kahn, J. H. (2020). Confidentiality and capacity. Emergency Medicine Clinics of North America, 38(2), 283–296.

Zimmermann, A., Pilarska, A., Gaworska-Krzemińska, A., Jankau, J., & Cohen, M. N. (2021). Written informed consent—translating into plain language. A pilot study. Healthcare, 9(2), 232.



The purpose of this discussion is for you to investigate healthcare privacy breaches and the associated risks and the ethical and legal issues confronted as a DNP-prepared nurse. Privacy breaches are serious offenses that negatively affect the trust between nurses and patients. To maintain this trust, nurses must maintain the privacy and security of patient information.



Reflect on the following scenarios related to the protection of health information. Select two of the scenarios to discuss.

Scenario 1: A staff nurse posted the following comment on her social media page: “Can this shift be any longer? It started out with a waiting room full of nagging people who don’t seem to know what ‘emergency’ means. Then, I had to deal with the drama of trying to transfer a 400 lbs. (no joke) intubated chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patient down the hall to the intensive care unit. Those intensive care unit nurses are such divas, and I wasn’t in the mood for their whining. Someone help!”

Analyze the privacy and security issues related to this social media posting.

Scenario 2: A nurse practitioner is preparing a presentation poster for an infectious disease conference. She includes pictures of varying stages of a client’s lesions in the poster.

Analyze the privacy and security issues related to the inclusion of patient information on the poster.

Scenario 3: A clinical instructor is working with nursing students on a medical unit for the day. While rounding to check on students, the instructor discovers a patient’s daughter wants to take a picture of the nursing student and the patient together to post on social media.

Analyze the privacy and security issues and explain the best response for the clinical instructor.

Please click on the following link to review the DNP Discussion Guidelines on the Student Resource Center program page:

Link (webpage): Graduate Discussion Grading Guidelines and RubricLinks to an external site.

Program Competencies

This discussion enables the student to meet the following program competencies:

Applies organizational and system leadership skills to affect systemic changes in corporate culture and to promote continuous improvement in clinical outcomes. (PO 6)

Appraises current information systems and technologies to improve health care. (POs 6, 7)

Course Outcomes

This discussion enables the student to meet the following course outcomes:

Assess the impact of informatics and information technology on organizational systems, change, and improvement. (PCs 2, 4; PO 6)

Appraise consumer health information sources for accuracy, timeliness, and appropriateness. (PC 4; PO 7)

Resolve ethical and legal issues related to the use of information, communication networks, and information and patient care technology. (PCs 2, 4; PO 6)

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