HIPAA (Health Information Portability and Accountability Act) is a federal law that protects health information. Federal standards are now in place that ensure patients have access to their own medical records while adding new responsibilities to those charged with protecting this information.
For those in the business of providing access to information, these regulations are the proverbial double-edged sword. If patients now have expanded access to their own medical data, the quickest, cheapest and most convenient manner to provide this information is electronically through the internet. So those involved in designing web applications and hosting web sites can expect to see new HIPAA related opportunities. However, with these new opportunities come new responsibilities. The security provisions detailed in HIPAA are exacting. Working within the scope of HIPAA places an onus on web designers to ensure that potentially sensitive medical information is kept private.
The sections of HIPAA that are most pertinent to this discussion are the Privacy Rule and the Security Rule.
HIPAA Security Rules
Any examination of HIPAA's impact starts with the provisions of the Privacy Rule. This is the section that provides patients with access to their own medical records. ... learn more
HIPAA Privacy Rules
The security rule is of particular importance to those who design and host web sites as it only refers to health information that is maintained or transmitted electronically. ... learn more
If HIPAA compliance is important to your business, make certain you entrust sensitive data to vendors and partners who are as vigilant as you are when it comes to protecting PHI. When looking for a custom web application to handle medical information, here are a few questions you might want to ask: ... learn more
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