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The cost to the health care industry of complying with just some of the proposed privacy rules stemming from the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) could reach $22.5 billion over five years, according to a report sponsored by the American Hospital Association (AHA). Earlier estimates by the Department of Health and Human Services put the cost at $3.8 billion, but the fact sheet issued with the standard put the figure at $17.6 billion.
The report, prepared by First Consulting Group of Long Beach, CA, found that compliance with the minimum necessary use of information rules would cost hospitals at least $1.3 billion over five years. If hospitals must invest in new information systems or upgrade current systems, the cost could rise to $19.8 billion, the report found.
Rules requiring that hospitals identify and monitor all business partners who use or access patient-identifiable information would cost $2.3 billion over five years, according to the report, which will be available soon on AHA’s Web site (www.aha.org).