The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is a legislation of the United States that ensures data security of all medical information for individuals.
Today, the top healthcare organizations’ concern is compliance with HIPAA (Healthcare Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996). HIPAA rules are meant to secure protected health information (PHI), whether electronic or manual.
To achieve HIPAA compliance, healthcare institutes and professionals must follow guidelines that will ensure the security and protection of their patients. If you are not sure about the rules, engage the Chief Information Security Office for review.
HIPAA Compliant – A Checklist
HIPAA rules and regulations have changed over the years, causing healthcare organizations to face many challenges. Its complex language has often created a hindrance that makes it hard for organizations to determine if their activities are correctly maintained according to HIPAA compliance. Healthcare organizations must address some specific rules by HIPAA, which are as follows:
- HIPAA Privacy Rule
- HIPAA Security Rule
- HIPAA Enforcement Rule
- HIPAA Breach Notification Rule
HIPAA Privacy Rule
The HIPAA Privacy rule ensures that an individual’s healthcare information is adequately protected, including medical records and personal information (healthcare plans, insurance, and finances). The goal is to provide security while allowing secure access to healthcare practitioners, but not without a patient’s authorization.
The rule is to balance the disclosure of information and protect an individual’s privacy. According to the HIPAA Privacy Rule, patients have full rights over their medical information, which means they can obtain their medical records or request a correction.
HIPAA Security Rule
The HIPAA Security Rule has set the national principles to safeguard the electronic health information of an individual as declared under the privacy rule. The Security Rule ensures the electronic PHI’s reliability, security, and confidentiality. Three types of safety measures fall under HIPAA Security Rule: Physical protection, Technical protection, and Administrative protection.
Limited Access to Facility – The organization must limit the physical access to its amenities and ensure that only authorized personnel are allowed in the facility.
Workstation security – The organization must implement strict policies and procedures to use electronic devices at the workstation. A covered entity must record all hardware activities, including people responsible for transferring or moving data.
Access Control – The organization must allow only authorized personnel to access electronic PHI. Any removal of e-PHI from the system must be examined, ensuring that it is adequately altered or destroyed.
Audit Control – All hardware and software activities must be recorded and examined, ensuring no data theft or misuse of the information. It is the organization’s responsibility to only authorized people to have access to the information.
Training Management – The organization must train all of its employees and brief them on the security measures of e-PHI and the consequences of violating any policies and procedures.
Assessment – The organization is responsible for assessing all its security measures and how well they are being followed. Organizations must be consistent with the rules by limiting disclosure of e-PHI to a minimum. Only authorized personnel should have access to the information.
HIPAA Enforcement Rule
The HIPAA Enforcement Rule requires all healthcare organizations enforcement of the Privacy Rule. If any organization fails to comply with HIPAA, it must face penalties. There are several ways the OCR implements the Privacy and Security Rules:
- Investigation of complaints
- Determining whether healthcare organizations comply with HIPAA
- Educate organizations and provide substitute compliance if required
HIPAA Breach Notification Rule
Any organization that allows disclosure of healthcare information without authorization, under any circumstances, will be convicted of violating HIPAA rules. If the organization discovers a breach of information, it must notify the secretary right away.About Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual bookkeeping, providing service to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud platform where their QuickBooks™️ file, critical financial documents, and back-office tools are hosted in an efficient SSO environment. Complete Controller’s team of certified US-based accounting professionals provide bookkeeping, record storage, performance reporting, and controller services including training, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, process and controls advisement, and bill-pay. With flat-rate service plans, Complete Controller is the most cost-effective expert accounting solution for business, family-office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.