Keeping Your Health and Medical Info Safe — An Intro to HIPAA

Most of us believe that our medical and health information is private and should not be shared without our consent however when we deal with Health Care Service providers it is bound to be shared. So when thinking about keeping such information protected we want to know who has this information. The Privacy Rule, a Federal law, gives one rights on your health information and sets rules and compliances on who can look at and receive your health information. The Privacy Rule applies to all forms of health information, electronic, written, or oral. The Security Rule is a Federal law that requires security for health information in electronic form.

What is HIPAA?

HIPAA is the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act enacted by the United States Congress in 1996. Its goal is to set standards for protecting sensitive patient data, also known as protected health information (PHI). HIPAA provides set of standards which provide prescriptive guidance for protecting and securing PHI.

Which Areas of Health Care does HIPAA takes care of?

HIPAA Act is made up of five Titles as described below:

Title 1 — HIPAA Health Insurance Reform

Title I of takes care of Health care access, renewability and portability. It protects health insurance coverage for workers and their families when they change or lose their jobs.

Title 2 — HIPAA Administrative Simplification

Title 2 takes care of Preventing healthcare fraud and abuse and medical liability reform. It requires the Department of Health and Human Services to establish national standards for electronic health care transactions and national identifiers for providers, health insurance plans, and employers to handle security and privacy of health data.

Title 3 — HIPAA Tax Related Health Provisions

Title 3 standardizes the amount to be saved per person in a pre-tax medical savings account.

Title 4 — Application and Enforcement of Group Health Plan Requirements

Title 4 takes care of Application and Enforcement of group Health Plan. It broadened information on insurance reform provisions and provides conditions for group health plans regarding coverage of persons with pre-existing conditions, and modifies persistence of coverage requirements.

Title 5 — Revenue Offsets

Title 5 takes care of regulations on Company owned Life Insurance. It defines how employers can deduct company-owned life insurance premiums for income tax purposes.

To conclude, Federal Government has taken care of all the security and fraud problems you can face related to your Health Information. Patients can be carefree on this front and Providers need to hire an experienced Software service provider to make their EMR\EHR HIPAA Compliant.

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