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Goals Of HIPAA

Here at Digital Transcriptions, we have gone to great lengths to ensure that our entire process is HIPAA compliant; right from receiving initial dictations, to the return of transcribed documents.

The purpose of HIPAA is to ensure patient confidentiality for all healthcare related information. HIPAA requirements apply to any entity storing and/or transmitting patient identifiable information via electronic media. These requirements are designed to: 1) Improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the healthcare system by creating a standardized method of exchange of electronic data, relative to administrative and financial transactions. 2) Safeguard the security/privacy of electronic health information. The deadline for compliance was October 16, 2002.

All healthcare organizations that participate in transaction, coding or storage of electronic health information must comply; including health plans, healthcare clearing houses, healthcare providers, and integrated delivery networks, as well as individual physician offices.

HIPAA and the Medical Transcription Industry
Although medical transcription services are not directly regulated by HIPAA, there is little doubt that such an important component of healthcare documentation will be impacted by the privacy and security standards found in HIPAA.

Security and Confidentiality

Regardless of how the final HIPAA requirements for security and privacy are finally enacted into law, your organization will need to prevent unauthorized access, tampering and access to individually identifiable patient information.
You will also need to ensure that all business agreements with your business and trading partners, practices, providers, suppliers and vendors have appropriate security, technology and procedures in place to protect you from potential HIPAA violations.

A few things our company needs to meet the proposed HIPAA security and privacy requirements are:

  • logon passwords and password policies
  • timely user account management
  • encrypted storage of patient information
  • network and application access procedures and restrictions
  • network access monitoring software
  • network encryption technologies
  • network and email virus protection on our computers
  • strong firewall protection
  • These measures not only ensure privacy and security for patient data, but for internal business systems and users as well.
 
 
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