New changes modifying the HIPAA Privacy and Security Regulations are going into place to meet the privacy and security mandates within the HITECH Act in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
New requirements for business associates of HIPAA covered entities and requirements to notify individuals in the event of a breach are only two of the many areas affected in the new law, including new requirements for restriction and accounting of disclosures and increased enforcement activity. Covered entities that use electronic health records (EHRs) will need to meet new access and disclosure rules and all kinds of business associates and their subcontractors will need to establish compliance programs. A whole range of new regulations around the release and accounting of electronic records have created new burdens that your EHR and your medical records department must deal with.
Business associates are now directly covered by the HIPAA privacy and security regulations and are liable for fines and penalties if they do not comply. In addition, there are new kinds of businesses that are considered to be business associates, such as Health Information Exchanges and e-Prescribing Gateways, but also patient safety organizations and any subcontractors of business associates, putting thousands of businesses under regulation that were not regulated by HHS before now. We will explain what a Business Associate needs to do differently under the new regulations.
Electronic records have new demands placed on them, in both providing access and in accounting for all disclosures of health information – the electronic age in health care brings new obligations to serve individuals as well as manage health information for healthcare professionals. We will discuss how disclosures must be tracked in an EHR and review the various ways patient records can be supplied electronically.
The new regulations will be reviewed and their effects on usual practices will be discussed, as will what policies need to be changed and how. We will show what policies and evidence you need to produce if you are audited by the HHS Office of Civil Rights. Now that there is a legislative mandate to audit compliance, and a random audit plan well under way, you need to be prepared to respond to audit requests.
Not only are the compliance rules changed, but the enforcement rules have changed, with a new four-tier violation schedule with increased minimum and maximum fines, and mandatory fines for willful neglect of compliance that start at $10,000 even if the problem is corrected within 30 days of discovery. Violations that are not promptly corrected carry mandatory minimum fines starting at $50,000 and can reach $1.5 million for any particular violation. And any reports of willful neglect are required to be investigated under the law. Even violations for a reasonable cause or with reasonable diligence taken are subject to penalty.
Whereas the former practice of USDHHS has been to audit compliance only in instances where a violation was reported, the law now requires USDHHS to conduct a regular HIPAA compliance audit program. The new audit program is already under way. With the far-reaching changes in the rules and the new enforcement and penalty levels, it’s never been more important to review your HIPAA compliance and meet the new requirements.
This Webinar will help health information professionals understand what they have to do, and when, and what to keep in mind as they move forward, in order to be prepared for compliance with the new regulations. It will provide a comprehensive look at the changes in the law and prepare attendees for the process of incorporating the changes into how they do business in their facilities.
Why should you attend: The HIPAA privacy and security regulations are changing in ways that affect every health care-related entity, from providers to insurers to business associates, and more. The HIPAA Privacy and Security Regulations have been modified in regulations previously issued as interim final rules (IFRs) and notices of proposed rule making (NPRMs) by the US Department of Health and Human Services (USDHHS), and many of these new regulations are expected to be finalized in the summer of 2012 and go into effect just 60 days later.
All kinds of covered entities, and now, business associates of covered entities and their subcontractors as well, need to review their HIPAA compliance, policies, and procedures to see if they are prepared to meet the changes in the rules. Some subcontractors of business associates may not even be aware that they handle protected health information and now fall under the regulations.
Changes in marketing regulations are creating new obligations and limiting behaviors that may already be in place.
New regulations around the release and accounting of electronic records are creating new burdens that your EHR and your medical records department must deal with.
The enforcement rules have changed, with a new four-tier violation schedule with increased minimum and maximum fines, and mandatory fines for willful neglect of compliance that start at $10,000 even if the problem is corrected within 30 days of discovery. Violations that are not promptly corrected carry mandatory minimum fines starting at $50,000 and can reach $1.5 million for any particular violation. And any reports of willful neglect are required to be investigated under the law. Even violations for a reasonable cause or with reasonable diligence taken are subject to penalty.
Areas Covered in the Session: