The session begins with overview of the HIPAA regulations and then continues with presentation of the specifics of the Privacy Rule, such as Individual Rights and Uses & Disclosures, and recent and expected changes to HIPAA and other rules such as 42 CFR Part 2 regarding Substance Use Disorder information, including the impacts of required changes in your practices to meet the rules. The discussion will include special considerations for circumstances such as the COVID-19 pandemic and sharing of information for public health purposes.
The session continues with a detailed examination of HIPAA Security Rule and Breach Notification requirements, including what you need to do to protect information and what you have to do if you don’t. The discussion includes consideration of telemedicine, video tools, and Business Associate relationships, and the relaxation of enforcement relating to the adoption of video technologies during the emergency.
The session concludes with a discussion of the essential activities of performing risk analysis, mitigating risk issues, documenting policies, procedures, and activities, training staff and managers in the issues and policies they need to know about, and examining compliance readiness through drills and self-audits, all as part of a 10-step plan for reviewing and maintaining HIPAA compliance.
The HIPAA Officer in any HIPAA covered entity has a great deal of responsibility, and the right answers to compliance questions are not always obvious. The HIPAA Regulations carry significant obligations to protect the privacy and security of Protected Health Information, and significant penalties in the millions of dollars can result from non-compliance.
Even if you have worked on your HIPAA compliance in the past, you could be out of compliance today because of the changes to the rules, new guidance, changes in how you do business and manage PHI, changes to the threats to privacy and security, and even changes in other laws and policies not directly related to HIPAA. New technologies present new compliance challenges, and the COVID-19 pandemic has brought focus to HIPAA limitations on communications that have been clarified or relaxed for the emergency.
All of these changes have an impact on your HIPAA compliance, and if you don’t keep up, you are leaving yourself open to complaints and enforcement investigations. The HIPAA Officer needs to be up-to-date on the latest issues and be ready to review all the aspects of HIPAA compliance now, to be sure you are working in the right direction and are addressing the issues of greatest importance.
Areas of the rules that have shown compliance problems in the past are now targeted with guidance and audits to improve and verify compliance. There is new guidance on dealing with issues of opioid incidents. And new threats from insiders and Ransomware could expose or destroy your private information and harm your patients. There is plenty that can go wrong with HIPAA compliance, but with the right training and resources you have a chance to make your patients happy and stay out of trouble.
Each topic area below will be presented in approximately 45-minute segments, with breaks between every two segments.