In today's healthcare world HIPAA is the compulsory regulation that must be adhered to when working with protected health information (PHI). According to HIPAA, PHI is any information about health status, provisions of care, or payment for health care transmitted and maintained in any medium that can be reasonably linked to an individual. Furthermore, the HIPAA regulation lists 18 different identifiers that can make up one's PHI.
There are two standards that deal with the security of PHI: 1) the Privacy Rule and 2) the Security Rule. The Privacy Rule applies to all PHI regardless if the PHI is in a paper, electronic, or voice medium. However, the Security Rules applies only to electronically stored PHI (ePHI) such as data on hard drives, flash drives, CD's, and DVD's. Each rule has a different set of standards that need to be met in order to be in compliance with the HIPAA regulations. Knowing both rules will greatly reduce your risk of any civil penalties.
Legal Nurses should pay close attention to the HIPAA regulations because they may fall under the umbrella of the regulation while acting as a Legal Nurse. The HIPAA rules require one that becomes a business associate of a covered entity (healthcare provider, etc.) to meet certain requirements. Consequently, any Legal Nurse that becomes a business associate of a covered entity or an agent of a business associate will need to have a basic understanding of the Privacy and Security Rules. Lastly, becoming a business associate or an agent of a business associate will also require that certain contractual obligations are met.
Detailed info about HIPPA is included in the LNC STAT certification course and the Privacy Rule, Security Rule, Business Associates, and Covered Entities are further discussed and analyzed in the Case Strategies for the 21st Century Workshop.
LNC STAT: Advanced Legal Nurse Consultant Certification >>
Case Strategies for the 21st Century >>