Are you operating a lab business? Do you perform diagnostic testing for patients? When you operate a lab business, you need to focus on following HIPAA regulations to protect your patients’ and clients’ information. HIPAA requires you to follow a strict and private way to protect sensitive patient information, whether it is in writing or on the screen. As you send out information to clients and bills to patients, you want to focus on upholding these privacy rules. With everything being done on computers in many lab facilities, you need to take these extra steps to ensure privacy for your patient information when sending bills.
All data that is entered into computers or devices should be encrypted. This allows only those with the proper decrypting code to access these files, which provides the optimum amount of protection for this information. Any time you are entering sensitive, private, or HIPAA-compliant files into the computer, you will want to have an encryption code for full access.
Another way to provide the proper amount of safety to your patients' information is to educate your staff with the proper protocol and necessary laboratory solutions. Provide them with the tools and knowledge they need to properly handle patient information. Without this knowledge, many mistakes can occur, and these mistakes can be costly when it comes to patient information. Host routine HIPAA training sessions and update your staff on any new software or device changes when they occur.
Make sure that you perform regular updates to any computers or devices that use firewalls and security software to keep information secure. When you fail to update this software, they will not be effective in blocking hackers and other people trying to get access to this private information, which can cause a breach in your data system. This can lead to many damages and create a host of problems with billing, patient care, and patient data.
Make sure that you follow the HIPAA practices that are outlined by the medical community in your lab facility as well. Failure to follow these practices can lead to citations, warnings, or even closures, as this is essential for all members that have access to patients and patient information.
If your software happens to suffer from a security breach, you should have a plan intact to prevent any additional damages and mitigate any losses. When you have a plan prepared, you will be able to act quickly to implement it to prevent further damage and protect the information that you still can. To avoid losing any important data or breaching in the confidentiality, you need to have multiple prevention plans in place.
By following these tips, you can keep your patient and client information private and protecting during your lab billing practices. If you are looking for more information and solutions to help streamline your lab billing practices, contact Hankins Consulting to hear more of our laboratory solutions today.