What is HIPAA?

What does HIPAA stand for? The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) 

What is HIPAA? HIPAA became effective April 14, 2003. It is an act holding Health entities accountable for keeping patient information private and secure. This applies to doctors, clinics, hospitals, dentists, nursing homes, pharmacies with data transfer, Health Plan providers, and Healthcare clearinghouses. This act, along with Federal Civil Rights laws, protects a client’s fundamental rights of nondiscrimination and health information privacy.

What does HITECH stand for? Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health of 2009 (HITECH)  

What is HITECH? HITECH is an extension of HIPAA to cover all entities that may have confidential client information. HITECH extends the coverage of HIPAA rights to be followed by the business associates with covered entities, such as billing departments, EHR (Electronic Health Records) vendors, and storage companies who house vital patient records. HITECH requires such entities to “have security in place before receiving confidential client information.” 

What are the client’s rights under HIPAA/HITECH? Through HIPAA, client/patients have the right to:

  • Privacy and security.
  • Control of their information and medical records.
  • Access to their personal information.
  • Request information on record to be amended.
  • Know with whom their information has been shared.
  • Decide how their information is being shared.
  • Regulate the information being shared with others, such as family.
  • Share Immunization Records with schools.

How can our office help? Our office strictly follows the HIPAA guidelines to ensure that our client’s information remain confidential and secure.