Is Your Dental Practice Prepared For HIPAA Compliance?

HIPAA Audit Request Letters Are "In The Mail"! Is Your Dental Practice Prepared?

Achieving compliance with HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules can be a challenge for all organizations, regardless of size; however smaller healthcare providers tend to have more problems. Budgets tend to be more restrictive, and a lack of suitable staff means slow progress is made. This was clear from the results of the pilot round of HHS compliance audits.

Regulatory bodies such as the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (OCR), State Comptrollers, and Attorneys General, investigate data breaches for HIPAA violations, and periodic audits are conducted to assess compliance.

The current round of OCR HIPAA compliance audits will assess how well organizations have implemented the requirements laid down in the Privacy Rule, Security Rule and Breach Notification Rule. Healthcare organizations, health plans, healthcare clearinghouses – and Business Associates of the above – will have their compliance efforts put to the test.

The audits are being conducted on large healthcare providers, multiple hospital systems, the nation’s largest health insurers; however smaller healthcare providers are also being tested, and the same rules and penalties for non-compliance apply.

Small practices can, and are, being fined if their compliance efforts have not reached the required standard. In 2012, the OCR sent a message to small practices by issuing a non-compliance penalty to a small healthcare provider in Phoenix, which employed just 5 physicians. Phoenix Cardiac Surgery was forced to settle the OCR for $100,000 after an internet-based clinical appointment calendar was found to be accessible to the public.

Realizing smaller practices’ require assistance with their compliance efforts, Endeavor Health is offering new HIPAA-Compliance tools for small dental practices’ with a wide range of compliance tools have been developed to ease the burden on small practices.

The latest product is aimed at small dental practices; those typically employing between 1 and 3 dentists. Our service offers the necessary protections to keep data secure, and achieve compliance with HIPAA Rules.

We add a number of controls that are typically not used by small practices to secure data. The new service provides holistic systems management for an enhanced client network protected by commercial-grade firewalls, domain control and wireless access point, enabling security not found in the residential products typically used by smaller dental offices.

Our intrusion prevention and detection system, commercial-class email system, and numerous other protections are also included in the service.

Endeavor’s “HIPAA security protects dental practices and their patient information from a wide range of security risks and vulnerabilities and frees the smaller practice from the capital investments typically associated with achieving real security and compliance. #weshouldtalk