HIPAA Breach Notification Final Rule Released By HHS

Posted on August 21, 2009 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Yes, this website is called EMR and HIPAA, but as you can tell from the content I’m much more interested in EMR than I am in HIPAA. Although there is certainly some correlation.

That said, I think there’s some interesting things happening with HIPAA that people need to be aware of. HHS released the Breach Notification Final Rule. Healthcare POV said the following about the rule:

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a final rule on breach notification requirements for covered entities (CEs) and business associates (BAs). Published in the Federal Register, the rule dictates proper procedure for responding to a breach, including when notification is required, who to tell and how to dispense that information. The rule also reiterates and clarifies recommended methods of data encryption.

The announcement came 2 days after the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released its breach notification final rule, which covers personal health record vendors and other non-HIPAA CEs. HHS consulted with FTC on requirements and asked the public for input through a request for information released earlier this year.

The link above has more analysis of these changes as well. I’ll admit that I’m not an expert in this area. Anyone else who cares to chime in on the impact of these changes, I’d love to hear about it in the comments or even a guest blog post if someone’s interested.