Maintaining HIPAA Compliance is one of the most pressing concerns for organizations and companies in the healthcare industry.
A HIPAA compliance breach can mean not only expensive fines, but also lost business through the bad PR they bring. Stay on top of your HIPAA compliance with these 5 tips.
5 Ways To Improve Your HIPAA Compliance
1. Analyze Your Risk Points
One of the best ways to improve your HIPAA compliance is to consider just where you customer’s and patient’s data “lives” in your workplace. Make a list of where patient data enters your system, where it is stored, and where it exits. Look for potential flaws in this information pipeline. HIPAA-compliant software for your engagement with the health information exchange is a great ways to help monitor the flow of information.
2. Break Out the Shredder
If your organization has stacks of paper records, it might be in your best interest to scan and shred those documents. HIPAA-compliant software can be a great way to store this data without the overhead and risk management needed for physical records. The health information exchange is making health care become more digitized than ever and this will be an easier transition to make the sooner you make it.
3. The Human Element
No matter how good your protocols and software are, they are only ever as good as the people who operate them. Your HIPAA-compliant software can be top of the line, but if you haven’t invested into your employees you will still be having data risks. Proper health information exchange trainings are one of the most important things you can do to help improve you HIPAA compliance. The more your staff know, the better your compliance will be.
4. Compliance Breach Response Plan
It turns out, one of the best ways to improve compliance is to plan for when it is breached. Even the best, most complaint, companies who use top of the line HIPAA-compliant software will have an accidental breach at some point. The difference between preparing for that breach and not will make a huge difference in terms of fines and public impact. Your plan should encompass your entire information flow including your health information exchange. Make sure to plan for not only responses to minor breaches, but also major ones. Have your key players do some table top exercises where you go over what your company would do in the event of small, medium, and large breaches—including what those look like for your organization specifically. A strong plan will prevent your organization from being caught off guard by a breach. Remember, a key part of HIPAA compliance is being prepared.
5. Utilize a Health Information Exchange
Using a health information exchange like ChartSwap is another great way to maintain HIPAA compliance. Retrieving and maintaining patient information on a digital platform along with HIPAA-compliant software helps cover the risk of shuffling around countless paper files. Services like ChartSwap help manage your HIPAA compliance by offloading some of the legwork to trusted and HIPAA compliant third parties.
HIPAA compliance is vital to the continued success of your organization or business and for the wellbeing of your patients. These 5 tips for improving compliance will keep you ahead of any potential breaches and make sure that your patient’s data is safe in your hands.