What is HIPAA?
There are three main areas that HIPAA addresses:
- Privacy & Security
- Unique Health Identifiers
- Administrative Simplification
HIPAA was put in place to ensure all patient information is recorded, stored, secured, and accessed with rules and processes that are universal.
IT and HIPAA
- Access Control– A covered entity (an establishment that must be in compliance with HIPAA) must implement technical policies and procedures that allow only authorized persons to access electronically protected health information.
- Audit Controls– A covered entity must implement hardware, software, and/or procedural mechanisms to record and examine access and other activity in information systems that contain or use e-PHI.
- Integrity Controls– A covered entity must implement policies and procedures to ensure that e-PHIs are not improperly altered or destroyed. Electronic measures must be put in place to confirm that e-PHI has not been improperly altered or destroyed.
- Transmission Security– A covered entity must implement technical security measures that guard against unauthorized access to e-PHI that is being transmitted over an electronic network.
Who handles compliance and security?
HIPAA has caused a surge in the need for IT personnel, both on and off-site. Many organizations that are subject to HIPAA requirements outsource some or all of the tasks required, to implement procedures and maintain compliance, to 3rd party IT services companies that specialize in HIPAA compliance and network security.
Two IT roles are typically involved in HIPAA compliance auditing and security of E-PHI: (certmag.com)
- Network Administration: needs to know how to secure the network and the existing infrastructure, monitor the firewall, and protect the network from intrusion.
- IT Manager: needs a more thorough understanding of how HIPAA affects their teams and existing infrastructure and systems. The IT manager needs to determine what is required to be compliant, how to implement the proper solutions and manage deadlines associated with HIPAA.
Why using a 3rd party IT company is the right choice?
Compliance and security of a network is a full-time job. Many organizations have IT staff but may not have the ability or desire to handle this responsibility in its entirety.
Using an IT Company that specializes in data migration, storage, backup, disaster recovery, and security allows covered entities to:
- Migrate data to E-PHIs
- Meet compliance policies
- Have a secure network
- Have personnel manage all processes and systems
- We Help Companies Become and Stay Compliant. All Without the Capital Cost of an In-House IT Staff.
- HIPAA Compliance Specialist – Abtech Technologies’ by removing the dash and space before ‘HIPAA
Using a 3rd party makes sense fiscally, but the value of risk mitigation from this strategy may be even more important.
- Minimize the possibility of conflicting interests and tunnel vision that in-house personnel may have.
- Ensure you are going beyond the minimum requirements for compliance and security.
- Ensure security solutions are being continually improved and updated and are reasonable and actionable.
Using a 3rd party company to complete the audit and implement solutions will provide peace of mind when it comes to risk mitigation and the insight needed to meet HIPAA compliance in a cost-effective way.
Abtech Technologies offers best-in-class HIPAA compliance auditing and implementation in conjunction with data migration, data storage, and security, cloud backup and disaster recovery, network operation center (NOC) services, and systems monitoring and maintenance for every covered entity.