Importance of HIPAA Compliance for Healthcare Specialists

This article talks about why HIPAA compliance is crucial for healthcare specialists. It clarifies why healthcare specialists are unable to avoid HIPAA; and that, through HIPAA compliance, healthcare specialists can gain patient trust, keep patients more secure, and achieve better patient results.

Why Healthcare Specialists Cannot Avoid HIPAA

One objective of HIPAA is to give privacy protections for personally identifiable health information retained by Covered Entities. To attain this goal, the Privacy and Security Rules enforce requirements Covered Entities should adhere to so as to safeguard the privacy of “Protected Health Information” (PHI). The inability to comply with the HIPAA requirements could bring about considerable financial penalties – even without the occurrence of a data breach or PHI compromise.

The majority of healthcare providers are Covered Entities and, therefore, must carry out policies and procedures to adhere to the Privacy and Security Rule requirements. As personnel of Covered Entities, healthcare specialists must comply with their employer´s guidelines and procedures. For this reason, healthcare specialists cannot steer clear of HIPAA. Nonetheless, there are other reasons why HIPAA compliance is crucial for healthcare specialists.

The Merits of HIPAA Compliance for Healthcare Professionals

Definitely, trust is the most crucial component of a patient/healthcare specialist relationship. Patients provide their healthcare specialists with personal details of their lives mainly because they believe that healthcare specialists care to achieve optimal health results. Nonetheless, trust is a delicate asset. In case their sensitive information is compromised because of a HIPAA violation, patients may hold back data essential to the provision of care in spite of the likely long-lasting implications on their health.

Healthcare specialists can offset the risk of breaking trust by adhering to the guidelines and procedures enforced by their employer to avoid HIPAA violations. If patients are certain their privacy is being honored, this encourages trust – which adds to the provision of better care so as to realize optimal health results. Good patient results boost the morale of healthcare specialists and bring about a more fulfilling work experience.

The Healthcare Specialist and Personal Impact of Noncompliance

One of the guidelines a Covered Entity needs to carry out is a sanctions policy applicable when employees fail to comply with HIPAA guidelines and procedures. Covered Entities must implement the sanctions policy and respond to HIPAA violations committed by healthcare specialists since, in case they don´t implement the sanctions policy, the Covered Entity is committing a HIPAA violation. In addition, when the Covered Entity doesn’t act, noncompliance may become a cultural norm.

There may be professional and personal effects when healthcare specialists are being sanctioned for a HIPAA violation. Penalties can vary from verbal notices to the revocation of professional certification – which will make it hard for a healthcare specialist to obtain a different work – and, when there’s a criminal conviction because of the noncompliance, it will probably be reported in the news which is going to have consequences for the personal reputation of a healthcare professional.

Who is Liable for HIPAA Violations?

As pointed out earlier, the disappointment to comply with HIPAA isn’t always the fault of the healthcare specialist. Though Covered Entities need to give instruction on policies and procedures that link to the healthcare specialists´ job, they might not have the resources to offer training about all possible scenarios a healthcare specialist may come across or to keep track of compliance 24/7 so as to avoid the creation of cultural norms.

Therefore, accidental violations of HIPAA can happen because of the insufficiency of knowledge. Nonetheless, Covered Entities do not always admit responsibility for accidental violations because of insufficiency of knowledge simply because it suggests they failed to carry out a comprehensive risk analysis, disregarded a threat to PHI privacy, and was unable to give “necessary and appropriate” training – or, when a cultural norm is created, did not succeed to keep track of compliance with packages and procedures.

Can You Avoid Unintentional Violations of HIPAA

The best solution to prevent unintentional HIPAA violations along with the professional and personal implications of noncompliance – even though they aren’t your wrongdoing – is to make sure your understanding of HIPAA includes all aspects of your function and the situations you may face. To accomplish this degree of knowledge, you ought to make the most of third-party HIPAA training courses that give you exhaustive information about HIPAA rules and regulations.

Being liable for your own understanding of HIPAA – and utilizing that information to give good results in a HIPAA-compliant way – safeguards your profession enhances your prospective job and allows you to get more through your job. Granted the choice, the majority of healthcare specialists would like to do the job in a place that functions compliantly to give better patient results, wherein spirits are high, and by which the healthcare expert loves a more gratifying work experience.