Hospitals must be 'vigilant and proactive': Why OCR is asking for $78M budget

The HHS Office of Civil Rights is asking to nearly double its budget in fiscal 2024, to $78 million, to deal with the increasing number of healthcare data breaches, its director told Politico.

Melanie Fontes Rainer said the agency's budget has been flat for two decades despite the fact that the number of breaches has grown fivefold in that time, reaching 50,000 last year, according to the March 17 story.

"We’re seeing hospitals where their systems have ransomware embedded in them for years," she told the news outlet. "The numbers are not getting smaller — they're getting bigger. It's imperative that hospitals and other healthcare organizations be vigilant and proactive."

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