In today’s social media era, companies all over the world benefit from the ease of using social networks to communicate quickly and efficiently with their customers. Although slower to adopt, the healthcare industry has also joined the social media craze. Healthcare organizations utilize social media to attract, communicate, and interact with current and potential patients. Healthcare facilities and providers use social media to deliver important messages and new information about procedures and services.
With nearly 70% of US adults on social networks and 2.34 billion users worldwide, social media’s reach is not only expansive, but its’ opportunity can also be limitless. It has quickly become one of the most effective and essential tools for marketing and public relations in nearly every industry. However, despite all the benefits of social media, there are also considerable risks involved for HIPAA violations.
The HIPAA Privacy Rule prohibits the use of (Personal Health Information) PHI on social media networks, which includes posts or text messages about specific patients, in addition to images or videos that may result in a patient being identified. PHI can only be included in social media posts if a patient has given their consent, in writing, to allow their PHI to be used and then only for the purpose written in the consent form. Some of the most common HIPAA violations using social media include:
There are serious penalties for employees and healthcare organizations for that violate HIPAA. Which is why it is important that all workers are trained on HIPAA social media rules. Healthcare organizations must also implement a HIPAA social media policy to reduce the risk of privacy violations.
Helpful HIPAA social media guidelines for healthcare organizations:
For a HIPAA compliance social media checklist visit the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights at:
For further questions regarding HIPAA social media requirements, contact the experts at MedSafe for a free consultation. MedSafe is the nation's leading one-stop resource for outsourced safety and health compliance solutions in healthcare.
Toll-free: (888) MED-SAFE