Are you caught up on HIPAA compliance? Here at Partnered Solutions IT, we are dedicated to making sure you and your practice have all your bases covered when it comes to security compliance. If you want to learn more about HIPAA compliance standards and how to maintain compliance in the new year, read on or give us a call.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is the guarantee that all sensitive patient information is protected by the hospital or medical office. Practices that collect, store, or use such information must follow the HIPAA guidelines and have a physical network. These standards apply to any organization that provides treatment, processes payment, or operates within the healthcare realm.
When it comes to being HIPAA compliant, there are some rules you can follow to set yourself up for success. Firstly, make sure you know which audits and assessments apply to your practice. This could be HIPAA specifically, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), or another third-party organization. NIST tends to be even stricter with its policies than HIPAA, but both are good to review and take note of. You’ll then want to perform said audits and make sure there aren’t any holes in your security or data systems. If this isn’t something you want to do or can do at your organization, call the team at Partnered Solutions IT. We can conduct audits and make sure you are all good to go for the coming year.
Once you conduct and analyze your audits, it’s important to take action. Make sure all your gaps are filled and there is a plan in place if another gap appears. Review these plans and actions as often as necessary to stay up to date. One step that will make this process easier is by appointing a HIPAA Compliance/Security Manager. This person is responsible for staying on top of everything and making sure your organization is compliant with its data storage and privacy practices. They can also train your other staff on how to maintain HIPAA compliance throughout the year. This is crucial to lessening the number of issues that come up in your audits and avoiding critical breaches.
Another thing to take note of is the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). The CARES Act was put in place in 2020 but was extended in 2021 for an additional year. This has helped healthcare providers respond to the Coronavirus in appropriate ways with supplemental economic assistance. The CARES Act is related to HIPAA compliance because it states that practices must update their privacy policies to include new amendments in accordance with the CARES Act. Those amendments include consent, disclosures to public health authorities, disclosures during investigations or proceedings, anti-discrimination, and breaches.
If you are not HIPAA compliant and you get audited, not only will you be liable for any lost or stolen records, fines will also be assessed. You will also receive a permanent report that will stay with your career or practice forever. If you are worried about maintaining your HIPAA compliance in the coming year, call the HIPAA professionals at Partnered Solutions IT. Through data-driven decisions and help from our technicians with over 150 years of combined experience, we will get your practice up to snuff with HIPPA’s rules. We help you so you can help your community. Call or email us today to find out more about how we can help you with HIPAA compliance.