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Remember that the pandemic response may create unique Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance risks, says Victoria Vance, JD, partner with Tucker Ellis in Cleveland.
Time, staffing, and focus are at a premium, she says, but staying cognizant of patients’ privacy remains important.
Vance offers reminders on how the pandemic response can increase HIPAA compliance risks:
In many instances, treating COVID-19 patients has meant working in conditions that are far from ideal for HIPAA compliance, notes Raymond Krncevic, JD, counsel with Tucker Ellis in Cleveland. Care is provided in overcrowded hospital units, drive-through testing sites, and other suboptimal situations where providers cannot communicate with patients in typically private settings.
“It sounds simple, but in these situations, common sense goes a long way,” Krncevic says.
He offers these suggestions:
Financial Disclosure: Author Greg Freeman, Editor Jill Drachenberg, Editor Jonathan Springston, Editorial Group Manager Leslie Coplin, Accreditations Director Amy Johnson, MSN, RN, CPN, and Nurse Planner Maureen Archambault, RN, MBA, HRM, CPHRM, FASHRM, report no consultant, stockholder, speaker’s bureau, research, or other financial relationships with companies having ties to this field of study. Consulting Editor Arnold Mackles, MD, MBA, LHRM, discloses that he is an author and advisory board member for The Sullivan Group and that he is owner, stockholder, presenter, author, and consultant for Innovative Healthcare Compliance Group.