HIPAA Training: How to Keep Your Staff Up-to-Date

Serious repercussions can result from violating HIPAA rules, including significant fines or even the prospect of criminal charges and jail time for willful violations.

Although intentional HIPAA violations are a severe concern, employee error is the primary cause of the majority of violations.

You can safeguard your patients, your staff, and yourself from the consequences of HIPAA violations by receiving the right HIPAA training and instruction.

Keep Everyone on the Same Page

Maintaining your staff’s familiarity with HIPAA standards and keeping them informed of any changes to policy through routine training sessions is one of the greatest strategies to prevent infractions.

A single annual training session is insufficient, and so is restricting training efforts to new hires. No matter how long an employee has been with you, test them all on HIPAA requirements and hold frequent training sessions throughout the year.

Keeping HIPAA policy material readily available for employees and even sending it to them on a regular basis through email or another method is a recommended practice.

Practice Proper Data Backup and Retrieval

When handling electronically protected health information (ePHI), it is not only a good idea to practice proper data backup and retrieval, but it is also required by law.

Medical practitioners must always have access to ePHI or they risk being in violation of HIPAA regulations. Electronically stored data is never totally secure.

You may experience data loss due to hardware issues, infections, unintentional deletion, theft of hard drives or computers, and more. Although there are various actions you can take to lessen these issues, without using cloud storage backup it is impossible to ensure the security of your data.

Your personnel has to be trained in using the cloud storage option you adopt in your clinic. Every employee who has access to ePHI should be informed of HIPAA regulations governing the handling, access, and storage of private data.

In the case of data loss or unintentional deletion, staff members need to be aware of which files require routine backup and how to access backup files. This can be done by adopting an archive policy that specifically states:

types of files that need to be backed up

Use your cloud hosting service properly

Access restrictions for ePHI data

Becoming HIPAA compliant absolutely requires cloud storage. Incorporate instructions on using your cloud storage system and your archiving policy in your routine HIPAA training sessions.

Make sure to invest in a HIPAA-compliant backup system that backs up your data continually and automatically, without user input or schedule, to reduce the workload on your employees. Employees plan backups far too frequently and lose crucial data as a result. It can be avoided with a continual, automatic backup service.