Q&A with a CTE Senior QA Consultant
CTE helps healthcare IT stay HIPAA compliant
Tell me about the work you’ve been doing recently. What’s the most interesting challenge you’ve faced, and why?
I was brought in to work on a healthcare project where I was tasked with testing the patient data from their healthcare carrier downloads. There were issues with data getting lost during the transfer from carrier to the provider. We were instrumental in assisting this client in diagnosing and remediation the data issues. Basically, the manual processes they had in place plus their excel report configurations were causing the data to be suppressed in some reports but not in others. The end results were a more streamlined process with more automated processes to end the human error. We removed one of their testing environments and condensed all the reports into one environment and we were able to begin testing the new technician’s retina scanning tool, application and exam counter.
The most challenging part of the project was getting the developers to buy in to the QA process. This was a relatively small group that had pretty much done their own testing and didn’t see the value of having a QA to check their work. After discovering a few major defects and making some sound suggestions, we won their confidence and they engaged us to the point that no new functionality was released unless it was reviewed (and approved for release) by CTE.
What’s the risk of not testing in the healthcare industry?
There are many risks, including first and foremost being HIPAA compliant. The Healthcare industry is governed with many rules and regulations to make sure patient data and personal information is secure. Any violations of HIPAA compliance can mean the end for a healthcare company or partner so having a QA department that’s always aware of this is very, very important!
How is testing for healthcare different?
There’s not a lot of difference in my opinion, in the end its data and its application functionality. As long as you keep a sharp eye on the details with compliance in mind, the testing can be fun and very educational.
What do you think the future of testing looks like?
The future of testing will not change that much in my eyes. Although automation is very popular, I feel there will always be a need for manual human interaction when testing. I still find it’s the most effective way to discover those hard to find defects hidden within the code. There is always a need to stay abreast of new technologies, coding and trends as a QA, so my thoughts are that the future is full of technological changes, but the methods used to test those changes will remain the same.
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