HIPAA and HiTECH Compliant Website Design
A website can catalyze a drastic positive change for any practitioner in the medical industry. Health care related websites
have been proven to cut costs, improve operational efficiency, increase patient quality care, extend geographic and numerical health care reach, and enhance the ability to seal medically related business contracts.
However, any website with a direct or, through business agreements, indirect handling of PHIs must abide by HIPAA and HiTECH compliance or face up tp a $250,000 fine and 10 years in jail!
In fact, Idaho State University was one business that failed its HIPAA requirements and the result was a $400,000 fine. It is pivotal that you review your website for full compliance with the HIPAA and HiTECH acts as well as any other applicable law related to the electronic processing of PHIs and EHRs.
Key Legislation and Terms for Medical Industry Websites:
stands for Electronic Health Record. EHRs are essential to the improvement of health care overall through insights gleaned from aggregate medical data. On an individual level, an EHR is meant to accurately capture the state of health of the patient at all times and provides immediate access to a full patient health history.
stands for electronic Protected Health Information. Any health information processed online or within a closed network that contains personal identifiers must adhere to strict privacy and security standards.
stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. According to CMS.gov (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services)
, HIPAA's purpose is to standardize electronic health care transactions and national identifiers for providers, health plans, and employers." Additionally, security requirements include in-depth auditing capabilities, data back-up plans, and disaster recovery mechanisms.
Non-compliance with privacy and security standards will result in penalties, which have increased under the Affordable Care and HiTECH acts. If you have(or plan to have) a website that processes any kind of electronic medical information, it is highly recommended to HIPAA compliance website specialists.
Introduced in 2009, HiTECH stands for Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health. This act expands the security and privacy requirements of original HIPAA requirements. This act also contains specific incentives to encourage adoption and innovative use of the system.
Patients must also be notified of any PHI breach, or any release or compromise of unencrypted PHI data. Lastly, the HiTECH act extends HIPAA provisions directly to business associates
. Thus, your website must comply with HIPAA if you have any contracts with healthcare providers or entities that process PHI.