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HITECH / HIPAA Newsletter April 2014 Archive


HIPAA Compliance is a Team Sport:  Is your team Omnibus Rule ready?

 April 2014 Issue No.  52
In this Issue
Products now available in the HSG Store
Who is enforcing PHI laws?
HITECH Switch OnProducts now available in the HSG Store. 


HIPAA Breach Notification Framework 

Our HIPAA Breach Notification Framework walks you through the process of analyzing security incidents to determine what actions you must take to ensure your response complies with the HITECH Breach Notification requirements. The Framework discusses HITECH breach compliance in simple terms and uses twelve flowchart diagrams to help you navigate the process. It also includes tools and templates that help "jump start" your breach notification compliance initiative.

  

 Buy Now...  

  

 

Business Associate Agreement: a HITECH Ready Model Contract

Our model Business Associate Agreement includes provisions that meet the requirements of HIPAA/HITECH and is fully annotated with links to the relevant statutory/regulatory authority that underpins each Contract clause. The Contract package also includes a complete "User's Guide," with a clause-by-clause explanation of the issues addressed in the Contract. 

Buy Now...

The Security Rule Under HITECH:
a Business Associate Perspective
First Edition

The most important step for building a "good SR compliance story" is for the business associate to get started. The approach in The Security Rule Under HITECH is to build the story iteratively over time. Most business associates (large or small) will likely need help in creating the story. The framework discussed throughout this document provides a good road map to follow.

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HIPAA Core Training Combo

This package includes the Breach Notification Simplified Training Module, the HIPAA Privacy Rule under HITECH Training Module, the HIPAA Security Rule Under HITECH  Training Module and the HITECH and HIPAA Compliant  Training Module all in one Combo Package.  Buy all 4 for a little more than than the price of 3

 Buy Now...
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Other Resources
HIPAA Survival Guide Subscription Plan
HIPAA Survival Guide Subscription Plan

Cloud, Social Media, and Mobile Checklist Product Overview
Cloud, Social Media, and Mobile Checklist Product Overview
Business Associate Agreement Product Overview
Business Associate Agreement Product Overview
HIPAA / HITECH Core Training Product Overview
HIPAA / HITECH Core Training Product Overview
Privacy Rule Checklist Product Overview
Privacy Rule Checklist Product Overview
Breach Notification Framework Product Overview
Breach Notification Framework Product Overview

HSG Logo 
 
Dear Carlos,

Welcome to our April 2014 HIPAA Compliance Newsletter.  

   

Our article this month is entitled: Who is enforcing PHI laws?

 

Recent enforcement actions by the FTC and Secret Service have called into question which government agencies, including state agencies, are responsible for enforcing laws related to protected health information ("PHI"). Certainly, from a federal government perspective, the Department of Health and Human Services ("HHS") has long been recognized as the enforcer of the HIPAA Regulations. The FTC, on the other hand, has long had the responsibility for enforcing laws related to personally identifiable information ("PII") under the Federal Trade Commission Act of 1914, and its corresponding regulations, which are focused on protection of consumer data. The Secret Service has a dual role as it states on its website:

 

The mission of the United States Secret Service is to safeguard the nation's financial infrastructure and payment systems to preserve the integrity of the economy, and to protect national leaders, visiting heads of state and government, designated sites and National Special Security Events. 

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

NEW PRODUCT: Our HIPAA Risk Management Program Training module is now available on the HSG Store. As always, this new product is available at no extra charge to our Subscribers.
 
This module gets you up to speed on the mandatory HIPAA Risk Management Program required by the HIPAA Security Rule, but it also encompasses the HIPAA Privacy Rule and the HITECH Breach Notification Rule. A Risk Management Program is required to comply with the HIPAA Security Rule and also to ensure that Risk Assessments are not a one time event, but rather an important part of a comprehensive initiative.

 

WEBINAR: Exploding HITECH/HIPAA Myths, Urban Legends, & Other "Snake Oil."

Date/Time
 

Thursday April 17, 2014 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM EDT

 

Get this event on your calendar!   

Registration


Click here to register.  

HIPAA Survival Guide Subscription Plan
HIPAA Survival Guide Subscription Plan

 

 
HSG Announcements
Webtones PointerIn addition to our commercial-off-the-shelf training products, we now offer training customized for your organization through our partnership with the Digital Business Law Group. We recognize that some organizations, including business associates, have a need for HIPAA / HITECH training tailored to their specific needs (click here or on the image below to get more information).
 
HIPAA Training  

 

Join the Conversation
The HIPAA Survival Group on LinkedIn continues to be the go to place for meaningful discussion of HITECH / HIPAA issues. You will find many industry thought leaders and insiders sharing their views on the evolving compliance landscape. 

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Main_Article 

Who is enforcing PHI laws?

 
Webtones Pointer Recent enforcement actions by the FTC and Secret Service have called into question which government agencies, including state agencies, are responsible for enforcing laws related to protected health information ("PHI"). Certainly, from a federal government perspective, the Department of Health and Human Services ("HHS") has long been recognized as the enforcer of the HIPAA Regulations. The FTC, on the other hand, has long had the responsibility for enforcing laws related to personally identifiable information ("PII") under the Federal Trade Commission Act of 1914, and its corresponding regulations, which are focused on protection of consumer data. The Secret Service has a dual role as it states on its website:

 

The mission of the United States Secret Service is to safeguard the nation's financial infrastructure and payment systems to preserve the integrity of the economy, and to protect national leaders, visiting heads of state and government, designated sites and National Special Security Events. 

 

Based on their mission statement, one would not think that the Secret Service would have any jurisdiction regarding PHI, but apparently the part of its mission that requires it to "safeguard the nation's financial infrastructure and payment systems" is broad enough to encompass PHI.

 

The mission of the respective state agencies can be represented, in broad terms, by using the mission statement on the Massachusetts Attorney General's website.

 

Attorney General Martha Coakley is the chief lawyer and law enforcement officer of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  In addition, her office is an advocate and resource for the Commonwealth and its residents in many areas, including consumer protection, combating fraud and corruption, protecting civil rights, and promoting meaningful economic recovery. 

 

Including the States, it is clear that there are well over 50 agencies that might have an interest in enforcement actions related to PHI. For example, the HITECH Act, section 13410(e), specifically gives State Attorney Generals the authority to bring an action under HIPAA.

  

HITECH / HIPAA NewsletterFTC Enforcement?

 

The FTC holds the view that it can go after PHI data breaches under its purview of protecting consumers from unfair business processes. This is the same jurisdiction that enables the FTC to go after website owners such as Google and Facebook for privacy violations. In these cases it is not so much that the FTC is the "Privacy Police" but rather when companies violate privacy policies, the FTC views it as "unfair and deceptive business practices." Apparently, this is what happened in the Accretive Health and LabMD cases, where the FTC  used its broad jurisdiction to go after PHI abuses.

 

Key Contract SectionsSecret Service in on the Act? 

 

Not to be out done, and obviously having "extra bandwidth" from protecting the POTUS, his family, and other high ranking government officials, the Secret Service has ventured into the PHI enforcement business.

 

Read More...

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HITECH Puzzles3Lions Publishing, Inc. is now the owner/operator of the HIPAA Survival Guide website and the official sponsor of this newsletter. Our mission is to bring you HITECH / HIPAA statutes and regulations in an easy to read and digestible format, products that help reduce the burden of compliance, and "news you can use" via our newsletter.

We take a partnering and collaborative approach to the marketplace. If you would like to see specific topics covered in this newsletter, or additional products, then please let us know.


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