The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was designed as a method to require “covered entities” to maintain patient data privacy. The HITECH portion of HIPAA of 2010 requires “business associates” that have access to private patient data to also comply with specific actions to ensure privacy. The federal laws governing these guidelines can be intricate and any organization that is involved in accessing or maintaining patient data should have all staff HIPAA trained.
The HHS (Health and Human Services) rules that dictate that any staff or organization that has access to or maintains private patient data must receive training that is “necessary and appropriate” for security awareness of that data.
Healthcare Waste Management offers online HIPAA certification. Selecting employees for a general certification course will give them basic working knowledge of HIPAA. Every organization involved in maintaining private patient data should have a HIPAA Policy that details complete documented procedures that is shared with all employees.
Selected employees that take specified HIPAA certification courses can be involved in reviewing HIPAA management for the organization, audit results, and the certification can help in making decisions for organizational improvements for improvements for better compliance.
It must be noted that just getting a HIPAA certification does not automatically make any individual or organization compliant. A certification course for HIPAA is basically a positive step to make sure that all employees know the rules and the laws that govern protecting patient information. It really does not offer any legal advantage if an error is made or any legal leverage if a mistake is discovered. Compliancy means abiding by the strict requirements that govern HIPAA and a certification can be a helpful tool to use to understand compliance. The benefit of HIPAA certification is that it can assist in making sure that all staff for organizations of any size, make every effort to comply with the law and maintain the security required for private patient medical information.
Personnel that have been trained in HIPAA implementation are valuable to an organization and help to ensure that attention is given to all HIPAA guidelines.
In addition to HIPAA education, in the case of the discovery of non-compliance, HIPAA Certifications can help a case as it demonstrates intent of compliance with policies and procedures that have been set in place, that there are management reviews of procedures, actions have been taken to remedy any non-compliance situations, and that the organization does regular auditing of their HIPAA Management System.
The financial costs of HIPAA non-compliance can be high, and certification offers a method of proof of conscientious efforts that could help to reduce the severity.
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