Health Information Security Executives Vikrant Arora and Jeff Bontsas Join AEHIS Board
ANN ARBOR, MI, Jan. 24, 2020 – Two executives with extensive backgrounds in healthcare information security have joined the Association for Executives in Healthcare Information Security (AEHIS) Board this year. AEHIS members have elected Vikrant Arora, CISO at the Hospital for Special Surgery, and Jeff Bontsas, CISO and vice president of information security at Ascension Technologies, to serve three-year terms on the board.
“Vikrant and Jeff are great additions to our board,” said 2019 AEHIS Board Chair Will Long, vice president and CISO at Dallas-based Children’s Health. “They are well respected in our industry for their leadership skills and vision. AEHIS has an ambitious agenda for 2020, and having Vikrant and Jeff lend their experience and insights to our efforts will help AEHIS develop more educational opportunities and resources for our members.”
Arora has more than 15 years of global experience developing enterprise security and risk management programs. As CISO at the Hospital for Special Surgery, he focuses on developing an enterprise security strategy while managing business risks from digital innovations and the internet of things. Prior to joining the Hospital for Special Surgery, Arora was the CISO at NYC Health+Hospitals, where he was responsible for the secure and Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)-compliant implementation of the electronic medical record. He has also worked with Wipro, Pfizer, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals and Dimension Data in various security and risk management roles. At AEHIS, he contributed to the Medical Device and Health IT Joint Security Plan, which was released by the Healthcare and Public Health Sector Coordinating Council in 2019.
“Over the past 15 years, I have seen an increase in the number of security practitioners for whom this role caused a lot of personal stress,” Arora said. “I strongly feel the need for a CISO playbook that formalizes and provides some structure to this complex role, alleviates stress and reduces not just organizational but national cyber risk. AEHIS is perfectly placed to provide education and learnings for strong and relevant security leaders.”
Bontsas has more than 28 years of experience in the information technology industry, mostly devoted to information and cybersecurity. He has held several key positions since joining Ascension in 2001. Prior to becoming CISO for Ascension five years ago, he served as the national security director, responsible for directing the development and delivery of the Ascension Health information security program. Before joining Ascension, Bontsas worked as an engineer and IT consultant. He has been involved in several cybersecurity industry work groups and advocacy initiatives, including the Cybersecurity Act of 2015 Section 405(d) Task Group, whose work led to the publication of the Health Industry Cybersecurity Practices: Managing Threats and Protecting Patients document and supporting materials.
“I strongly believe we need to expand our working relationships, working together as an industry and as a country, to unite against the adversaries that attack us on a daily basis,” Bontsas said. “I believe AEHIS will continue to have a leading role in bringing our experience, talent and skills together to make that happen.”
Arora and Bontsas assumed their board positions on Jan. 1. The AEHIS Board plays a critical role in steering the overall direction of the association, which provides education, networking and advocacy opportunities for chief security officers and senior security executives in healthcare-related organizations. AEHIS is an affiliate of the College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME).
The Association for Executives in Healthcare Information Security (AEHIS) was launched in 2014 to provide an education and networking platform to healthcare’s senior IT security leaders. With nearly 900 members, AEHIS is advancing the role of the chief information security officer (CISO) through education, collaboration, exchange of best practices and advocacy in support of secure health information for the protection of both healthcare organizations and consumers. For more Information, please visit aehis.org.
The College of Healthcare Information Management Executives (CHIME) is an executive organization dedicated to serving chief information officers (CIOs), chief medical information officers (CMIOs), chief nursing information officers (CNIOs), chief innovation officers (CIOs), chief digital officers (CDOs) and other senior healthcare IT leaders. With more than 3,200 members in 56 countries and over 150 healthcare IT business partners and professional services firms, CHIME provides a highly interactive, trusted environment enabling senior professional and industry leaders to collaborate; exchange best practices; address professional development needs; and advocate the effective use of information management to improve the health and care in the communities they serve. For more information, please visit chimecentral.org.
Director of Communications and Public Relations, CHIME