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Lessons learned from HIPAA settlements

February 21, 2018

 

 

If you are a healthcare professional, it is prudent to assume that, at some point, your practice will experience a data breach or security incident. And with each passing year -- as society delves deeper into the world of technology -- this risk increases. Failure to plan for such an incident can also lead to an OCR HIPAA settlement, which could be paired with a high fine and a lengthy recovery process.

 

These are lessons learned from OCR HIPAA settlements over the past two years, according to HealthITSecurity. Covered entities and their business associates show a need for strong audit controls and current business associate agreements.. Implementing such safeguards is critical insurance to reduce your risk and to provides the opportunity to safely mitigate such issues when they arise. 

 

Solid risk management plans are also an essential aspect to data security, as was shown in the February 2017 OCR HIPAA settlement with Children’s Medical Center of Dallas (Children’s).Children’s agreed to a $3.2 million civil penalty, stemming from an incident when an unencrypted, non-password protected Blackberry was reported lost. 

 

HIPAAcraticRX understands that medical professionals face very real challenges when it comes to HIPAA compliance. The expanding amount of patient health information stored and transmitted electronically (ePHI) leaves your practice vulnerable to major security breaches and regulatory actions. Lack of proper employee training due to high staff turnover, and laxity in maintaining updated HIPAA certifications is equally dangerous.

 

While implementing a compliance program may seem overwhelming -- with the right help, the fix can be simple. HIPAAcraticRx helps navigate the ambiguity of HIPAA with its 5-tier path to compliance. Each tier builds upon the one before it, to forge a solid foundation of trust and integrity. 

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