The Benefits of HIPAA Compliance For Businesses

Anyone in the healthcare industry knows the importance of protecting the privacy and rights of patients. However, until 1996, no national standards were in place for handling patient data. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) provides guidelines on ensuring sensitive patient information remains private.

Abiding by HIPAA is a must for care providers. Compliance covers everything, including how to handle billing records, rules for sharing medical records, and even a guide to hipaa compliant faxing. Although the legislation might seem tedious at first glance, it also benefits businesses. Here’s how:

Protect Against Cybersecurity Breaches

Data breaches affect all industries, and the healthcare industry is no exception. Medical offices handle extremely sensitive information every day. If this data gets into the wrong hands, it can devastate patients. HIPAA compliance prevents this from happening.

Medical office security breaches are common, unfortunately. Under HIPAA, all organizations must keep their networks, software, and data systems updated. Any vulnerabilities must be patched immediately to prevent a breach. Compliance significantly reduces the risk of a cyberattack.

Better Audit Outcomes

The work audit strikes fear into whoever hears it’s coming. However, audits are necessary for running any business, including medical offices. HIPAA compliance requires healthcare facilities to perform regular audits. These audits are designed to catch any active system breaches. Audits show organizations how and why attackers gained access.

Following an audit, HIPAA requires that facilities take immediate action to resolve any found breaches. Solutions might include better training or improved software. No one wants to discover a flaw in their system. However, organizations with rock-solid HIPAA compliance produce better audit outcomes than those that don’t adhere to the rules. Complying reduces the risk of a costly federal audit.

Save Small Businesses Money

All small businesses, including medical practices, run on tight budgets. Avoiding unexpected spending is a must. In the healthcare industry, mishaps in patient privacy can cost a business owner dearly. HIPAA violations put the organization at risk of hefty fines and open the door to expensive lawsuits.

HIPAA violation penalties are expensive. Even unknowingly exposing a patient’s data can cost $100-$50,000 per violation. If a patient’s private healthcare information (PHI) gets into the wrong hands due to a breach, those patients can rightfully sue their healthcare provider. These fines and lawsuits can put a small practice out of business. Complying with HIPAA is the best way to avoid these costly situations.

Build Patient Trust and Loyalty

Patients get the best care from providers who are familiar with their situation. Ideally, patients find a doctor they trust enough to build a long-term relationship. However, if the practice isn’t HIPAA compliant, patients become dissatisfied and go elsewhere. Scenarios like this often reduce overall patient outcomes.

The best way a medical provider can build lasting relationships with patients is by staying HIPAA compliant. Protecting PHI at all times ensures patients don’t have to worry about their medical information leaking into the public. Compliant organizations usually have the most up-to-date systems in place, which also heighten patient satisfaction and quality of care.

Compliance Is the Best Solution

HIPAA legislation gave patients much-needed reassurance that their most sensitive medical information remains between them and their doctors. Organizations must follow the guidelines strictly to stay compliant. Providers that do enjoy the many benefits that come along with it. From fewer security breaches to happier patients, compliance is the best solution for all healthcare organizations.

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