How To Do A HIPAA Risk Assessment – Part 3

Once you have a complete inventory of all hardware used to access, store or transmit protected health information (PHI), you can create the necessary policies and procedures for your practice.

The HIPAA Security Rule requires practices to adopt and implement reasonable and appropriate policies and procedures.

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The OCR will inspect your practice’s policies and procedures during an audit. This means that your policies and procedures had better be complete and up to date to avoid severe penalties.

Policies and procedures are also important because they help to avoid breaches by ensuring that proper security methods are in place. They also are essential in the face of a breach, because they instruct your staff on how to respond.

What types of policies and procedures are required by HIPAA?

Your practice must develop a full set of policies and procedures. Some necessary policies include:

  1. Policies on training,
  2. Policies on sanctions for violations,
  3. Policies on access of ePHI and PHI,
  4. Policies regarding breaches and disaster management,
  5. Policies on backups and encryption, and
  6. Policies on social media.

Your policies and procedures should also include required forms and agreements, such as your staff Confidentiality Agreement, and your Business Associate Agreements with any vendors or service partners.

HIPAA requires these policies and procedures be reviewed periodically and updated in response to any changes that may affect the security of electronic protected health information (ePHI).

Practices must keep their written policies and procedures for six years after the date of their creation, or their last effective date. Whichever date is later governs.

We can craft HIPAA compliance policies that are tailored to your practice’s specific needs. Contact us today!

Visit the blog next week for Part 4 of this multi-part series.

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