There is a tremendous amount of data in the world of healthcare. That data includes personal healthcare information (PHI), which is regulated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). HIPAA’s initial purpose was to allow patients to carry health insurance from one employer to another; however, it soon morphed into a way to streamline and protect medical records.
HIPAA is meant to safeguard PHI as it relates to the privacy. This means any PHI that must be treated differently than other forms of data. Most PHI information is now digital, as more healthcare providers use electronic medical records (EMR), and how healthcare uses the data and how it’s transferred are vital parts of HIPAA compliance. It also mandates that any breaches of such data be reported. HIPAA compliance of digital data means that anyone who touches the data must not expose it, and that it should have technical, physical and administrative safeguards.
From secure messaging apps used by clinicians to the storage of EMR data, healthcare organizations have many platforms and channels through which PHI flows. Because of this flow, there are multiple steps required to meet compliance regulations. HIPAA isn’t something that anyone can ignore, either,