Partners: Do the health-care organizations you work with do everything they can to protect patient records and maintain HIPAA compliance? Probably not. In 2017, there were 477 health-care breaches affecting 5.6 million patient records. Over the past few years, attackers have focused heavily on medical records for their high value and because the security infrastructure surrounding them is typically less sophisticated than what’s guarding financial information.
Unfortunately for those that have failed to maintain compliance, many HIPAA violations result in multimillion-dollar financial settlements that leave the offending health-care organization reeling. Fresenius Medical Care North America settled its case with OCR for $3.5 million. Memorial Healthcare System, which was penalized for insufficient ePHI access controls, was charged a penalty of $5.5 million. Providers understand the urgency.
Fear of a financial hit isn’t the only reason customers must maintain HIPAA compliance, of course. Proper data handling, security and communications procedures can make healthcare organizations more efficient and enable them to provide better service to customers. In truth, setting up the right processes now is crucial to seeing the healthcare business grow into 2019 and beyond. And, being compliant with HIPAA may even help with GDPR, say experts.
Here are a few HIPAA compliance best practices that every health-care organization should follow.
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