200 Breaches Impacting Almost 5.9 Million Individuals, with Theft and Loss of Laptops and PEDs Major Cause

December 2, 2010.M Under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH Act), enacted as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, covered entities are required to report to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) any breach affecting 500 or more individuals within 60 days of discovery of the breach by the covered entity or its business associate.  The HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR), which is responsible for HIPAA privacy and security enforcement,  is required to post these HIPAA privacy or security breaches on its Web site (please note that this URL is a change from the initial…

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Transmission Security Integrity Controls: What to Do and How to Do It

In our series on the HIPAA Administrative Simplification Security Rule, this is the first implementation specification for the Technical Safeguard Standard, Transmission Security.  This implementation specification is addressable. Addressable does not mean “optional.”  Rather, an addressable implementation specification means that a covered entity must use reasonable and appropriate measures to meet the standard.  As we noted in earlier postings on HIPAA.com, business associates of covered entities will be required to comply with the Security Rule safeguard standards, beginning February 17, 2010.  This requirement is one of the HITECH Act provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), signed by President Obama on February 17, 2009. What to Do Implement…

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Audit Control: What to Do and How to Do It

In our series on the HIPAA Administrative Simplification Security Rule, this is the second Technical Safeguard Standard. There is not a separately described implementation specification. Rather, this standard’s implementation specification is connoted in the language of the standard and is required. As we have noted in earlier postings on HIPAA.com, business associates of covered entities will be required to comply with the Security Rule safeguard standards, beginning February 17, 2010. This requirement is one of the HITECH Act provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), signed by President Obama on February 17, 2009. What to Do A covered entity is required to implement hardware, software, and/or procedural mechanisms…

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Contingency Plan: Sample Policy and Procedures

This is the seventh Administrative Safeguard Standard of the HIPAA Administrative Simplification Security Rule. It has five implementation specifications: Data backup plan; Disaster recovery plan; Emergency mode operation plan; Testing and revision procedures; and Applications and data criticality analysis. The first three are required; the last two are addressable. Addressable does not mean optional. Rather, an addressable implementation specification means that a covered entity must use reasonable and appropriate measures to meet the standard. Further, as HIPAA.com has noted earlier, business associates also will be required to comply with the Security Rule standards, effective February 17, 2010. HIPAA.com will outline What to do and How to do it for each…

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One Week from Today: 5010/D.0 Final Rule Effective Date

They’re coming: the Ides of March (the 14th); NCAA Basketball Tournament Announcement (the 15th); St. Patrick’s Day (the 17th); and 5010/D.0 Final Rule Effective Date (the 17th). If you are a covered entity, Level 1 testing begins Tuesday, March 17, 2009. Here are five things you need to do to start. Conduct a Gap Analysis. What do I need to do to become compliant on January 1, 2012? That date sounds far off, but it will be here before you know it. Unlike previous transaction contingency periods for covered entities and their trading partners, HHS has indicated that there will be no tolerance for those not ready. Read the final…

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