The West Wireless Health Institute is one of the United States’ leading providers of affordable healthcare. Based in San Diego, California, the company was founded in 2001 by Gary and Mary West and is currently the only independently funded, nonprofit organization dedicated to innovating, validating, and advocating medical technology aimed at reduces the cost of patient healthcare.
Based in San Diego, California, the company was founded in 2001 by Gary and Mary West. IT Director Charles Benson says that the company is currently working on one of their first innovations: Sense4Baby, a wireless fetal monitoring system that enables women with high-risk pregnancies to track their condition from home and transfer information directly to a doctor via Bluetooth. The technology typically costs around $100 and thus offers an attractive alternative to going to and from hospital for monitoring, which can often cost upwards of $5000. West Wireless Health Institute is looking to apply this same ‘continuous care’ technology to chronic diseases and other conditions.
West Wireless Health Institute achieved ISO 9001 Quality Management and ISO 27001 Information and Data Security certification. Charles says that obtaining the certification was an urgent priority for the company because it has to deal with confidential medical records on a regular basis. As it was already required to comply with HIPPA, getting the ISO certification was a means of cover all bases: ‘The ISO regulations were broader than the existing federal regulations, so we thought that conforming to these would be the best way for us to ensure that we were conforming to everything else. Opting to exceed requirement gave us greater security and assurance that we were always legal and above-board. Safeguarding our reputation is of prime importance.’
Because West Wireless Health Institute is relatively young the certification process was relatively simple, according to Charles. Despite the relative small size of the organization, he was impressed with the dedication and attention of the IMSM staff: ‘We had good level settings with IMSM,’ he comments, ‘such was their consideration, we felt like we were [their] only client at the time.’
Straight away, obtaining the ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 certificates gave staff at the firm a greater sense of security: ‘Internally, the executive team is very happy to know that our risk and liability is reduced’, Charles observes: ‘If there were ever a breach of information, we would in a very defensible position now. This certification reduces risk, as well as giving us assurance that we can defend ourselves in a legal action.’ West Wireless Health Institute is looking forward to seeing the broader benefits of the qualification in the coming months and years.