The healthcare industry functions largely on its ability to store patient medical records electronically. Thanks to technological advances the industry is enjoying better access to healthcare information while lessening the number of errors.
However, serious threats from data breaches have meant greater government oversight with increased fines for non-compliance. Acts like The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and the HITECH Act of 2009 are clear about their security standards when it comes to administrative, physical, logical, and technical safeguards, as well as the penalties assessed when theses safeguards are not upheld.
When dealing with patient ePHI, having a HIPAA compliant provider offers practitioners multiple benefits and peace of mind against impending audits.
Typical HIPAA Compliant Provider Benefits
- Privacy. Having your data on a platform or private cloud environment that only you utilize will reduce the likelihood of a serious ePhi breach.
- System Security. Anti-Virus and Anti-Malware software is mission critical for secure servers. HIPAA compliant providers are up to date on common and emerging threat profiles, employing timely security updates to keep you protected.
- SSL Certs. These keep your communications safe. From texts and email, all the way up to the server level, HIPAA requires safeguards and protocols for all employee and server communications.
- Ubiquitous Monitoring. Breaches are possible 24/7/365. Qualified providers know this and take the burden off practitioners by employing robust and sophisticated security tools that log and review everything that happens on your devices in real-time.
- Firewall Administration. By learning your typical traffic patterns, the system’s administration and security operations teams are better able to administer and manage your firewalls from injections, exploits and attacks. Even on web applications, these solutions follow PCI (Payment Card Industry) standards.
- DDoS Protection. Get ahead of intentional denial or service attacks by insulating yourself from damaging Trojans. Designated teams will monitor bandwidth for suspicious activity, and intercept it before a disruption occurs.
- Access Control. Whether your business requires multi-factor authentication or needs to implement an immediate change management protocol, these providers will have a team in place to help you do it– all without disrupting your practice.
- HIPAA Compliance and Risk Assessment. With a HIPAA compliant provider you won’t have to tie up valuable resources worrying about additional HIPAA standard security protocols.
- Intruder alerts. Singling out potential vulnerabilities in your network can be time consuming. Qualified HIPAA compliant providers offer constant scanning services that will detect suspicious patterns before they affect your data. A team of highly trained security analysts can quickly remedy potential threats and flag them for future investigations or issues.
Ultimately, the time and resources it would take to remain HIPAA compliant are no small feat. It’s the reason many healthcare providers elect to contract with a HIPAA compliant provider to protect their practices and ensure server uptime.
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