Medical Office Training-Common HIPAA Violations Can a Cost Practice
July 21, 2014
A federal judge presiding over lawsuits brought by plaintiffs alleging they were hurt or killed because of defective dialysis products has approved a qualified protective order for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act information. (HIPAA)
Defense counsel for Fresenius Medical Care North America nor their staff shall discuss protected health information about plaintiffs with their treating physicians, the judge ordered.
While attorneys are granted the right to receive HIPAA-protected information, U.S. District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock said they can only disclose the protected health information as authorized under case management orders. After the litigation is over, the health information is supposed to be returned to healthcare providers or destroyed.
This means that companies or medical offices being sued can release HIPAA information as it relates to the case to the proper people; and, means that staff cannot discuss any patient confidential information. When consulting for medical offices the importance of HIPAA compliance is often unknown or downplayed by physicians and staff.
For instance, when you sign in at a doctor’s office, you should not be able to read any other patient’s name that have signed in before you-if you can that’s a HIPAA violation. Most violations go unnoticed or unreported and in the extreme cases, they can cost millions of dollars.
The Top Ten Most Common HIPPA Violations:
10. Incomplete HIPAA authorization forms
9. Exclusion of a “right to revoke” clause
8. Failure to establish contracts with business associates
7. Release of information after the authorization period has expired
6. Errors in paper file storage and disposal
5. Failure to release patient information in a timely manner
4. Computer Hacking
3. The loss of backup disks or portable drives
2. Employees inappropriately accessing, using, or transmitting PHI
1. Storing patient information on laptops
Learn more on how to protect your office, staff and patients with the MMpiHer Method™.