Why Get Annual HIPAA Risk Assessment Training?

HIPAA Risk AssessmentThe Annual HIPAA Risk Assessment is conducted annually by the Information Security Management Association (ISMA). This assessment aims to inform the organizations about what they need to do in order to comply with the Security Rule. According to the HIPAA Rule, all private health information must be protected at all times. The Rule also lays down regulations and requirements for protecting personal health information. To meet these regulations and requirements, various organizations conduct an annual HIPAA Risk Assessment.

The objective of this assessment is to ensure that companies are taking appropriate steps to protect personal health information from unauthorized access. There are two categories under which the assessment falls: commercial and government. Within each category, there are sub-categories: corporate risk and government risk. Each sub-category has sub-bands: individual risk, business risk, and legal risk. Within each of these sub-bands, there are further sub-categories: disclosure, authorization, and compliance issues.

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The aim of a risk assessment is to inform companies on how well they are protecting personal health information. The results are then presented to the organization for review and interpretation. As per the Privacy Rule, only a covered entity can conduct an assessment. A covered entity is defined as any business that holds a valid health insurance policy issued by the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) or a State Medical program.

Most of the organizations that conduct assessments provide the results to the subject parties for reuse. It is important to remember that the results are for one purpose only and that is to identify areas for improvement. All the same, it is vital for an organization to understand that the results provide a very useful tool for the companies and subject matter administrators. As part of HIPAA training programs, companies must be taught that these reports are HIPAA confidential information.

When you consider the scope of personal health information, it becomes clear that companies have a lot of risk to protect. One area that is more frequently overlooked is credit information. Almost all individuals are born with some information in their files, but it is also a very good estimate that most of that information is probably unnecessary. Credit information involves such things as credit card numbers, home addresses, phone numbers, social security numbers, etc. It is very likely that the majority of individuals do not even realize that their information is on a credit report.

With that said, one of the main reasons why an organization has to get a risk assessment in place is to identify areas where HIPAA compliance needs to be improved. Many times, organizations will make mistakes when collecting this type of personal health information. For example, they may collect it without taking the necessary steps to protect it from being intercepted. They may use it in ways that are not appropriate. In addition, they may release it in ways that are not only inappropriate but also illegal.

When you understand the risks to your company and the legal obligations that come along with those risks, you can understand why it makes sense to get an assessment from a private, HIPAA compliant organization. You can learn about what forms are needed to obtain personal information and what type of personal information is appropriate to disclose. You can also learn about what types of third-party vendors that your organization requires to provide it with such information. Finally, you can learn what your third-party vendors can do to assist you in complying with your legal obligations.

These assessments are important for many reasons. The first is the protection of your company. By learning what types of threats are most common to your business and identifying those areas, you can take steps to mitigate them. For example, if you discover that hackers use spear phishing attacks to get at your customers’ personal information, you can take steps to prevent that from happening. By getting an annual HIPAA risk assessment, you can also learn what changes need to be made to your security procedures to make it harder for hackers to access your company’s confidential information. HIPAA risk assessments can help you stay in compliance with the Security Rule and ensure that your customers remain secure.

LA Medical IT Services offer medical help desk services to healthcare organizations. We pride ourselves in the quality of assistance we provide to our clients. Whether your staff is familiar with computers or not, we will make sure we resolve any issue that comes up quickly and effectively.

Communicate with us at: (888) 635 9595 for any technical help and security.

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