What is HIPAA Compliance?

HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. It’s a United States federal law that protects the privacy of patients and their health records.

what is hipaa compliance

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is a federal law that aims to protect sensitive patient health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent or knowledge.

What is HIPAA compliance?

HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. It’s a law that protects the privacy of patients and their health records. HIPAA also gives businesses the ability to share information with their customers in a way that is safe and secure.

If you’re like most businesses, you don’t know how to comply with HIPAA. In this blog post, we’ll explore the basics of HIPAA compliance and explain some of the more common problems you may face.

What HIPAA is and what does it cover?

HIPAA is a federal law that protects certain medical information from unauthorized access. The law requires all healthcare providers, such as hospitals and doctors’ offices, to keep health information safe and secure from unauthorized access.

Specifically, HIPAA requires healthcare providers to take steps to:

1.) Protect the confidentiality of PHI (Health Information) by limiting access to only those people who need it for treatment or care, and;

2.) Ensure the security of PHI by following appropriate procedures if an individual’s health-related information is disclosed or accessible outside the organization.

To comply with this law, you must have in place appropriate security measures. You can use encryption codes on your electronic data and make sure that no third parties have access to patient information. Regulatory bodies like the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also look at compliance with HIPAA.

How to share patient information safely

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is a law that protects the privacy of patients and their health records. HIPAA also gives businesses the ability to share information with their customers in a way that is safe and secure.

If you’re like most businesses, you don’t know how to comply with HIPAA. In this post, we’ll explore the basics of HIPAA compliance and explain some of the more common problems you may face.

As mentioned earlier, HIPAA is a law that protects your patients' private information. This means that if you have sensitive medical information on file — such as family members' health records — you are required to make sure that it can't be accessed by anyone outside your company without your express permission. 

You will also need to consider how people outside your company can use that information in order for them to participate in a particular healthcare services plan or receive certain benefits.

How to protect your business data

Businesses must adhere to HIPAA regulations to protect the privacy of their customers, employees, and the public. The law regulates how personal information is shared with third parties, who can access that information and whether businesses are allowed to share it.

Many states have laws that give businesses that collect business data the ability to use anonymized names and addresses instead of real names.

If your business wants to comply with HIPAA regulations without being absolutely certain you’ll avoid legal liability, it’s important to understand what HIPAA means for your business.

Here are some basics: 

A company (or organization) must verify that the customer is a “qualified individual” before they can release a customer’s personal health information (PHI). Qualified individuals include minors, pregnant women, and people with “physical or mental disabilities.”

Companies must also ensure that PHI is stored in a secure way so it cannot be accessed by unauthorized parties.

If a third party needs access to your company's PHI, you'll need to agree in writing which rules apply in order for that person to receive access from your company (and why).

Cloud storage services become a business associate if they store PHI on behalf of a healthcare organization, and therefore the cloud storage service must be HIPAA-compliant

How to comply with HIPAA regulations?

Before you can use HIPAA, you need to understand a few key things about HIPAA compliance. It’s important to know the difference between covered entities and covered entities that do business with other covered entities. There is also a difference between “consumers” and “individuals,” so it’s important to be familiar with which are which.

There are three categories of businesses that must comply with HIPAA regulations: health care providers; health plans (businesses selling insurance); and health care clearinghouses (health service providers).

While each category has its own set of rules, they all share the same goal — to protect individuals’ privacy and allow them to share their personal information with trusted third parties when needed.

Compliance requirements for healthcare facilities

One of the most important things you need to know about HIPAA is that it gives you and your patients the right to protect their privacy. You’ll want to be sure you and your staff are complying with the law…

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has created a set of regulations known as HIPAA for healthcare facilities and healthcare organizations. The HHS has also published new guidance on HIPAA compliance for healthcare entities, including information technology (IT) providers.

If you're a facility or organization that operates in the healthcare industry, we'd like to help you stay compliant by providing an overview of how HHS defines a “covered entity” for HIPAA purposes, as well as some key features of the information privacy rule.

Compliance requirements for mental health services

Mental health services are often covered by government-sponsored insurance plans. As a result, mental health is an area where businesses can make money through HIPAA compliance.

The first thing you need to know about HIPAA is that it’s an act of Congress meant to protect consumer privacy and safety.

Compliance requirements for research organizations

Sensitive health information for your patients is a popular topic among hospitals, doctors, and medical research organizations. HIPAA is the law that governs how you can share patient information. It’s important to know what you need to do in order to comply with HIPAA regulations.

Whether you’re sharing data for research purposes or for marketing purposes, it's important that you clearly identify what information is being shared. It’s also important that you tell your patients who their data is being shared with and how this information will be used.

Your patients deserve to have confidence in the way their information is being handled so they can make informed decisions about their own health care needs.

Summary

HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act), is the law that protects the privacy and security of your medical records. HIPAA also applies to the health industry, like physicians, hospitals, and other healthcare companies.

There are a lot of different areas the law covers, so if you’re not sure what HIPAA covers, you may want to consult with your attorney or lawyer. HIPAA is designed to protect your patient's privacy and ensure that you can keep your medical information private. 

References

https://www.cdc.gov/phlp/publications/topic/hipaa.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Health_Insurance_Portability_and_Accountability_Act

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