Tag Archives: HITECH Act

Looking at the Past to Predict the Future of HIPAA/HITECH Enforcement

2013 was a busy year for the Department of Health and Human Services. In January 2013, HHS issued its Final Omnibus Rule, substantially modifying both the Privacy, Security, and Enforcement Rules related to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Breach Notification Rule under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (the HITECH Act). The Final Omnibus Rule gives HHS’s Office of Civil Rights even greater authority to police covered entities and to enforce HIPAA/HITECH Act privacy regulations. As expected, OCR was active in its enforcement of the Final Omnibus Rule in 2013. In …


Copiers Don’t Easily Forget and HHS Doesn’t Easily Forgive

In 2010, Affinity Health Plan, Inc., a New York not-for-profit managed care plan, received some bad news after learning that it was an unwitting player in a CBS Evening News investigation on leased photocopiers. In its investigation, CBS went to a New Jersey warehouse and purchased several photocopiers, which included one previously leased by Affinity. With little effort, CBS was able to retrieve 300 pages of medical records from the Affinity photocopier’s hard drive, including patient test results, diagnostic assessments, and drug prescriptions. As a result, Affinity was required to file a breach report with the U.S. Department of Health …


The Past, Present, and Future of Electronic Health Records Regulations

It’s an understatement to say that the invention of the Internet has been one of the most important developments in history. With the advent of this revolutionary technology, individuals are no longer limited in their citizenship – i.e., just members of a village, town, city, or country. Rather, they can choose to be a part of a worldwide cyber-community. This global interconnectivity allows us to communicate with our friends, family, and colleagues across the globe in milliseconds. It propels business growth and development throughout the world, and it has even served as the catalyst for sweeping political change. However, along …