What is HIPAA?
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was initiated in 1996 to develop regulations protecting the privacy and security of healthcare data. As a result of this work, the Federal Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published the following privacy protection standards:
The Privacy Rule
The Privacy Rule establishes national standards for the protection of certain health information, specifically Personally Identifiable Information (PII), Protected Health Information (PHI) and electronic Protected Health Information (ePHI). These standards include setting limits and conditions on the uses and disclosures of PII without patient authorization.
The Security Rule
The Security Rule goes a step further to operationalize the Privacy Rule protections defined by HIPAA by addressing the administrative, physical, and technical safeguards that healthcare organizations or “covered entities” must put in place to secure and protect electronically stored and shared data. These protections help ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and security of ePHI.
How Can Organizations Comply with HIPAA?
Putting robust technical safeguards in place is not only necessary, it also makes complying with HIPAA regulations easier, especially when data security solutions are coupled with automation to help reduce the risks of human error.
Control access by implementing policies and procedures that allow only authorized persons to access e-PHI.
Ensure the integrity of e-PHI by implementing policies and procedures to ensure that the personal health information is not improperly altered or destroyed.
Audit controls by putting hardware, software, and/or procedural mechanisms to record and examine all access and activity surrounding e-PHI.
Secure transmission of e-PHI by implementing technical security measures to guard against unauthorized access when the data is transmitted over an electronic network.
Fortra’s Data Classification Solutions can help you comply with HIPAA regulations
The foundation of a solid data security strategy begins with data classification from Fortra, which supports compliance with HIPAA by allowing users to identify valuable data with classification labels or tags. This enables critical decisions to be made about how healthcare data is stored and transmitted and can help inform how downstream security solutions handle HIPAA-compliant data.