HIPAA & All you need to Know about the Recent Proposed Changes

Data integrity and its maintenance are one of the biggest concerns for every medical practice. Any kind of data breach or violation of the HIPAA regulations can result in huge financial penalties for your medical practices. In fact, it can cause permanent brand defamation and worst of everything, loss of patients and their trust in your practice. 24/7 Medical Billing Services completely understand the seriousness of this requirement and that’s why is HIPAA compliant.

Apart from maintaining all the aspects of the RCM process ensuring compliance with HIPAA security regulations, we will also advise you to make your practice HIPAA compliant. All data that we gather from our clients are processed keeping in mind the compliance requirements. Additionally, we get the HIPAA agreement signed by each of our clients so that there is no scope for any discrepancy in the future. To stand on our promises made to our clients, we also keep a close determined eye on the regular industry changes.

Changes Proposed to the HIPAA Privacy Rules

Many new HIPAA Privacy Rules have been proposed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to support the individual’s engagement in their care. In fact, the purpose of these changes is to remove any obstacles towards coordinated care and reduce the regulatory burdens on the medical industry.

Some of the features of these proposed changes include:

  • Greater involvement of the family and caregiver in the individual’s patient care who are experiencing any health crisis or medical emergencies.
  • Enhanced flexibilities for the disclosures in emergencies or any threatening circumstances. For instance, Covid-19 public health emergencies and the opioid.

Apart from enhancing patient access to health information, this proposed rule also aims at reducing the physician’s burden while sharing patient information with other care providers. Therefore, these changes are intended to increase care coordination and also allow the caregivers to develop new ways of innovation in the healthcare practices.

Some other interesting features that have a direct impact on the healthcare providers are:

  • The covered practices response time has been shortened by 15 calendar days (from 30 days at present). There is also an opportunity for an extension of a maximum of 15 calendar days (from the current extension of 30 days).
  • Covered healthcare providers are also required to respond to certain record requests that are received from other healthcare providers (covered) in case any patient pursues the right of access to their health plans.
  • The rule also specifies when the electronic PHI (ePHI) must be offered to an individual at his or her request at no extra charge.
  • Clarifies the scope of the covered practice’s abilities for disclosing the PHI to organizations like social services agencies, home & community-based service (HCBS) providers, and other related third-party agencies that provide any kind of health services to facilitate the care and coordination along with case management for individual patients.
  • Eliminate the requirement of a written acknowledgment of the receipt from a patient in case of direct treatment obtained from a healthcare provider against the Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP).
  • Expansion of the covered entities’ abilities for disclosing the PHI to avert health threats or safety when there is “serious and reasonably foreseeable” harm.

These changes are only the proposed ones with the expectations of many more aspects into the final rule list. Though you are not supposed to take any action on these proposed changes as of now, it is important to be aware of these changes and be ready to deal with them once the final list is out.

Impact of the HIPAA Privacy Rules

If your practice is well prepared for these HIPAA Privacy Rules, then you can take an advantage of the following:

Enhance the Profits

Do you know that non-compliance costs your practice more than twice the cost of complaining about the requirements? In fact, as per the research, the practices have experienced non-compliance issues that have costs them $14.82 million on average. It is a whopping 45% increase since 2011. That’s why there is a need for the proactive handling of all such requirements and no one can do this better than the 24/7 Medical Billing Services. Understanding the consequences of HIPAA regulations and maintaining them from the last many years of practice enable us to operate smoothly even in this ever-changing RCM Healthcare landscape.

Data Managing Practices

24/7 Medical Billing Services Software is super secured as they are built as per the HIPAA regulations. Thereby, they can’t be hacked. Moreover, we keep every patient’s data in a coded system that is extremely secured. In fact, each member accessing the system must sign the HIPAA Agreement and take the data security clause with extreme severity. We also understand that to maintain compliance, each team member must understand and respect other members and their roles. Therefore, we offer constant training to our team members to bridge the gap, if any.

Builds the Patient Trust

With state-of-the-art technologies and advanced systems, 24/7 Medical Billing Services allows you to maintain open and two-way communications with all your patients via the portals. This transparency will help you in building trust amongst your patients and the other healthcare staff members. Needless to say that this transparency also allows us to maintain a comfortable business practice with all our clients.

Helping you attain the “HIPAA Compliant” Stature

24/7 Medical Billing Services is HIPAA Compliant and partnering with us for your RCM process will provide you with a stress-free practice to focus more on the other things that really need your attention. Our team of experts will handle your RCM process as per the compliance requirements and also help your practice in attaining the HIPAA Compliant Stature. Moreover, we will take you through the various requirements step-wise and will monitor the process proactively. We will also take any action that is required to ensure there is no harm to your practice in terms of trust, time, resources, or revenues.

Let us know what you need!