7 Tips for HIPAA Compliant Telehealth

7 Tips for HIPAA Compliant Telehealth

Published: July 19th, 2022

Although telemedicine has been around for decades, it was the COVID-19 pandemic that accelerated its rapid adoption. The demand for telehealth services surged at the beginning of the crisis as hospitals and healthcare providers rushed to implement technology solutions that could enable them to continue providing care for their at-risk patients remotely. Changes in reimbursement and healthcare regulation followed suit, and quickly this new healthcare delivery model became the new norm.

When it comes to having a telehealth program, taking a proactive approach to compliance can significantly minimize the risks of a breach of protected health information (PHI) and HIPAA-protected data. The following are best practices to ensure your telehealth program is HIPAA compliant.

7 Tips for HIPAA Compliant Telehealth

  1. Use HIPAA-compliant vendors- When deciding which telehealth partner to use, it is best to only work with vendors who are HIPAA compliant. They must have security measures in place to protect PHI and be willing to sign a business associate agreement (BAA).
  2. Ensure data security- A system of secure communication and safeguards to ensure confidentiality and integrity of PHI must be implemented.
  3. Control access- Only authorized users should have access to PHI access, and the system should permit users to designate access through unique login credentials.
  4. Track data - PHI access must be tracked for each user. A system of monitoring communications containing ePHI should be implemented to prevent data breaches.
  5. Educate patients- patients should be informed of security best practices through videos, through your website, or via email.
  6. Regularly update and review security policies- Regularly review and update security policies for all staff who work with PHI via patient portals, smart home devices, fitness devices, and more.
  7. Educate and train employees- It is essential to train and educate staff on the proper use of the technology and best HIPAA practices when working with PHI.

Want to know more about HIPAA compliant telehealth? Ask the experts at MedSafe.

If you have questions about HIPAA (or any of your compliance programs), contact the experts at MedSafe. MedSafe is the nation’s leading one-stop resource for outsourced accreditation and healthcare compliance solutions. For over 20 years, we have been providing peace of mind to hospital groups, private practices, and their business associates. Our suite of onsite and online training services, including OSHA, HIPAA, Corporate Compliance and Code Auditing, equip your practice with the necessary tools and skills to achieve and maintain regulatory & billing compliance. MedSafe takes a hands-on approach and works directly with your team to uncover issues and define suitable solutions.

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