HIPAA Compliance For Medical Offices & Covered Entities
Being in compliance with the latest HIPAA & HITECH requirements means:
If you are a healthcare provider who performs functions such as, create, maintain, and transmit protected health information (PHI) electronically you must abide by the privacy standards.
Providers who also fall in the category of ‘covered entities’ and/or their ‘business associates’, whether it is through a contract or other legally required responsibility, must have procedures in place for the electronic transfer of personally identifiable information (PII) and PHI.
Most practitioners, to include their staff, don’t have the time to sort through packets of information, let alone know what privacy standards are. This leaves a lot of room for missed information, particularly requirements that are essential to protecting the practice itself and its’ clients. There are certain procedures that must be in place, which include the protection of specific IT equipment used when transferring PII and PHI.
Getting ready for an audit requires months worth of preparation and a lot of frustration, because the rules are not clear or exact on what is needed. Generally the staff is tasked with finding pertinent information on HIPAA and usually search for guidelines, or a checklist, or maybe even law sites to find what can be made into a policy for their practice. However, this type of search is usually inefficient and superficial at best.
After a few week’s effort in searching and creating documentation to show the practice has at least tried to stay in compliance, staff members start to feel overwhelmed after finding and reading about compliance requirements but not know how to apply any of that information. This leaves most owners confused and wondering what the next step is to meet those requirements.
We’re happy to say that we can help ease that frustration by guiding any type of practice who shares PII or PHI by offering assessments that are geared for passing audits. These assessments tackle those questions on what laws currently impact your operations, workforce and their access to information, and protection needed for servers and computers, among other concerns.
And since we are an IT company and know what to do to protect the life and security of IT equipment, it is an ideal relationship to establish because most PII and PHI is stored and transmitted electronically.
Question is…do you want to have a practice that offers quality of service while taking care of patients and have the right procedures in place to protect their PII and any PHI?
- 47 States have data breach laws that protect some of the essentials needed during the intake and billing process in almost every type of practice
- This includes: driver’s license, social security numbers, banking and credit card information
- A network also has to be secure enough to meet the standards both physically and virtually
- And if that’s not enough, there are two entities that can increase the requirements
- The State Attorney General enforces HIPAA
- State agencies enforce HIPAA
- And more…see how our reports cover what’s needed
- You’ll get specialized reports that are automated so that you don’t have to manually create evidence of compliance or write memo’s to cite laws
- Each report has years of knowledge built in, because of leading experts’ contribution this isn’t just preparation of simple documentation
- You’ll also get a run down of certain procedures to make sure you are not left alone trying to understand what rules are applicable and how to apply those procedures
This covers the two major act’s that govern protected information:
- Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act (HIPAA)
- Privacy Rule – protects all info
- Security Rule – protects data
- The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act
- Data Breach Rule – enforces reporting
- Omnibus Final Rule – updates the previous rules
However, with the implementation of the results from the detailed reports plus the procedures we are recommending, you will have a practical winning formula.
- These reports are a compilation of work that are done in a one time assessment of which incorporate feedback from leading HIPAA authorities
- Potential for ongoing compliance service, for those who have busy schedules and very little time to read about rules and create practical SOP’s as they continue to grow their practice
- Current security risks are addressed, and can prove compliance over a period of time
New Permanent Audit Program being conducted by those two entities features the following:
- New audit protocol – with 176 items
- Covers – Privacy, Security, Breach Rules
- Desk audits and site visits
- Now includes ‘Business Associates’
If you’re scrambling at the last minute, dont! Our HIPAA Assessment will provide you with the documentation and reports that are critical to passing audits and to stay in compliance.
> Consultation to help build a unique compliance program that fits your office
> Step by step process to address IT risks and suggestions on maximizing what you already have
> Identify users and their levels of access to set rules on what they can access
> Summary of risks found in your network
> Evidence of HIPAA policy compliance (in a report)
> Easier navigation process for auditors and your practice to meet requirements
> Be a part of the small percentage of practices that have data protection and be ready for an audit in a short period of time
> Peace of mind! Yes, that’s right…it matters that your practice can continue to offer the best without the worry
1. So, is this worth your time – to start now and implement procedures that teach you and your staff how to handle patient information correctly?
A: Only you can determine that. But if you already know what the best practices are and the risks involved when the rules aren’t followed, wouldn’t you already have something in place…
2. Will this work for my office?
A: Yes. The real benefit to you is that you don’t have to spend years to learn about IT and security, our team provides that and ensures your network meets current requirements. You also don’t need to be a doctors office to benefit from this.
3. I’m still not sure I really need this
A: If you’re still wondering about how much time or money you will spend on this, because that’s the concern behind this question, then you’ll have to ask yourself how much time and money will you spend on researching and gathering information over months or years, when it could be handled in weeks.
You see, if you don’t settle something right away it lingers and eventually it worries you until you become frustrated. And it’s unnecessary!
Gathering information is the first step to meet any type of requirement, so don’t fall behind.
4. Still have more questions?
A: Give us a call, fill out the form below, or email us and we’ll answer whatever questions you have. We can help steer you in the right direction, even if you’re just starting out.
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If you believe you need help with this portion of your business and are ready to take the necessary steps for compliance, fill out the form below.