We’ve been covering the development of HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) for a while now. The Office of Civil Rights has started carrying out their audits. Unfortunately, despite all the warnings, most organizations are still not prepared for complete privacy and compliance reviews. Data breaches still occur, according to the latest HCPro survey.
A large number of organizations aren’t prepared for HIPAA audits
Following a survey covering 400 organizations, the HCPro group said that only 17% of respondents said that they were fully prepared for a full HIPAA audit, while 70% of respondents felt somewhat prepared for the evaluation. Some embarrassing data loss stories have also been revealed. HIPAA audits are supposed to encourage best practice usage and reduce the risk of health data breaches. But an 83% “unprepared” response sends out a lot of warning signals. It could mean that there are many organizations which continue to put health records and data privacy at risk.Despite the warnings, most organizations are still not prepared for complete privacy and compliance reviews Click To Tweet
How to secure your data and ensure compliance
Compliance with HIPAA means securing all health data, including email. Email archiving is of paramount importance for complying with HIPAA audits, but it seems that healthcare organizations are still not taking this seriously enough.
Protecting data is something that should be fundamental – but just this week, patients at a North Carolina surgeons group had their data privacy breached. Old phone records were being transported by a truck when it shed some of its load. The data sheets included details such as patients’ addresses, home phone numbers, medical issues and prescription information. For this to happen to older hard copy data may be excusable, but the loss of electronic data like email will not be tolerated by HIPAA.
Organizations that fail to protect email data will fail a HIPAA audit, but there is a simple solution. An email archiving solution stores email records securely and ensures full compliance with the law.
To find out more and ensure your compliance, download our free whitepaper “Simple Steps To Compliance” by clicking on the image below.