Healthcare Information Security

HIPAA Compliance

Lack of Business Associate Agreement Equals $31K Settlement

April 26, 2017 - The Center for Children’s Digestive Health (CCDH) recently settled potential HIPAA violations by not having a business associate agreement in place, and paid OCR $31,000. The Illinois-based healthcare provider underwent an OCR compliance review in August 2015 after an investigation of a CCDH business associate, FileFax, Inc. Records containing PHI had been stored at FileFax, OCR said...


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Lack of Business Associate Agreement Equals $31K Settlement

by Elizabeth Snell

The Center for Children’s Digestive Health (CCDH) recently settled potential HIPAA violations by not having a business associate agreement in place, and paid OCR $31,000. The Illinois-based healthcare provider underwent an OCR compliance...

2017 OCR HIPAA Settlements Focus on Risk Analyses, Safeguards

by Elizabeth Snell

Maintaining PHI security must remain a top priority for covered entities and business associates year-round. Lackluster safeguards and irregular risk analyses can lead to potential data security issues, and even an OCR HIPAA settlement. With...

Judge Says HIPAA Regulations Do Not Apply in Organ Donor Case

by Elizabeth Snell

Patient records from the New York Organ Donor Network are not liable to HIPAA regulations, according to a recent New York Supreme Court ruling. A former network official claimed that four patients had not yet been declared legally dead before...

Prioritizing Healthcare Data Security in Aggregation, Sharing

by Elizabeth Snell

Data aggregation is quickly becoming a larger issue in healthcare, especially as organizations begin to switch over from fee-for-service models to value-based healthcare. As entities continue to gather, store, and transfer sensitive information,...

Mobile Security Strategies for Common Provider Concerns

by Elizabeth Snell

As covered entities and business associates continue to adopt mobile security strategies, it can be increasingly difficult to find tools that are innovative but do not compromise security. Mobile app privacy and security worries and maintaining...

Health Center Agrees to $400K OCR HIPAA Settlement

by Elizabeth Snell

Failing to conduct a risk analysis and not implementing a corresponding risk management plan to address found risks and vulnerabilities were part of the reasoning behind the latest OCR HIPAA settlement. Metro Community Provider Network (MCPN)...

AMIA Calls for HIPAA Clarification in mHealth Patient Data

by Elizabeth Snell

While mHealth applications can help bridge the health IT gap between providers and patients, greater HIPAA clarification and even an expansion of the rules may be necessary, according to the American Medical Informatics Association (AMIA). AMIA...

Preparing for an OCR HIPAA Risk Assessment Audit

by Elizabeth Snell

While healthcare organizations should not panic over the idea of a potential HIPAA audit or risk assessment, they should ensure that their privacy and security measures are comprehensive and current. This will not only keep sensitive data, such...

Administrative Safeguard Need Highlighted in PA Indictment

by Elizabeth Snell

Healthcare organizations must ensure that they have comprehensive and regularly updated administrative safeguards, such as user authentication measures and proper access control. A failure to have these in place, or having outdated ones, could...

How Do HIPAA Regulations Apply to Wearable Devices?

by Elizabeth Snell

Both covered entities and business associates should be well-aware of the OCR HIPAA audit program, especially as Phase 2 has been underway for several months now. However, as technology continues to evolve, there are also several areas that could...

Expanding Beyond HIPAA Audit Prep for Information Governance

by Elizabeth Snell

Earlier this month, the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) published its newest toolkit to assist organizations in preparing for HIPAA audits. The “External HIPAA Audit Readiness Toolkit” addresses...

How HIPAA Regulations Allow for Patient Data Access

by Elizabeth Snell

Patients being able to access their own information is an essential right under HIPAA regulations, according to the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). However, patient data access is often misunderstood, and individuals...

How Secure Communication Platform Benefits TX Health System

by Elizabeth Snell

As more healthcare providers are implementing mobile devices and opting for new technologies to improve patient care, the need for secure communication platforms have become more necessary. Physicians need to be able to communicate with one another,...

Lawsuit Filed to Avoid Potential Health Data Exposure Fines

by Elizabeth Snell

A Wisconsin-based publishing company recently filed a lawsuit claiming that it is being exposed to potential liability for unauthorized exposure of individuals’ personal health data. The concern over possible health information exposure...

$2.2M OCR HIPAA Settlement Highlights ePHI Safeguard Need

by Elizabeth Snell

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) recently announced a HIPAA settlement stemming from allegations of a lack of ePHI safeguards. MAPFRE Life Insurance Company of Puerto Rico (MAPFRE) agreed to the...

ONC, OCR Fact Sheet Discusses HIPAA Health Data Exchange

by Elizabeth Snell

In an effort to answer questions over how oversight agencies can receive information in health data exchange, the Office of the National Coordinator (ONC) and Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released a fact sheet discussing how HIPAA allows such...

OCR Clarifies PHI Disclosure Guidance in HIPAA Privacy Rule

by Elizabeth Snell

Partially due to legal confusion following the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has released an FAQ clarifying certain aspects of PHI disclosure policies with patients’ loved ones under the HIPAA Privacy...

Breach Notification Center of Presence Health HIPAA Settlement

by Elizabeth Snell

Healthcare network Presence Health recently agreed to a $475,000 OCR HIPAA settlement following a reported data breach and a subsequent delayed breach notification process. Presence submitted a breach notification report to OCR on January 31,...

Easing HIPAA Violation Concerns with Patient Data Access

by Elizabeth Snell

While the healthcare sector continues to work toward achieving nationwide interoperability, concerns over potential HIPAA violations with regard to patient data access is also on the rise. Covered entities need to allow individuals access to...

2016 OCR HIPAA Settlements Target Risk Analyses, Total $23.5M

by Elizabeth Snell

With 2016 winding down, covered entities and their business associates cannot ease up when it comes to protecting PHI. As the OCR HIPAA settlements from the year have shown, there has been a strong focus on healthcare organizations conducting...

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