In many years that it has been in existence, one of the noticeable changes that HIPAA has undergone is in its attitude. The earlier phase of advice and counseling has now given way to hardboiled and unforgiving enforcement. The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) no longer uses the cajoling and persuasive method. It wants to impose super harsh penalties on healthcare organizations which violate its rules.
For starters, healthcare organizations have to reckon with new, ominously higher fines, which include mandatory minimum fines of the order of $10,000 for those who are willfully neglectful in their compliance. This is in tune with its decision to raise the importance of HIPAA enforcement through audits. Simply no entity that comes under the scanner of the OCR and is required to carry out a HIPAA audit can afford to relax. Their turn for audit or compliance review can come up anytime.
If with all these changes into HIPAA; an entity that is subject to HIPAA compliance, such as a Covered Entity or its Business Associate and related entities do not take the necessary steps to protect their patients' rights and health information in accordance with what is required under the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Breach Notification Rules; they have to face the prospect of being slapped with heavy penalties, which, as mentioned above, start at $10,000 in cases of willful neglect. Covered Entities and Business Associates have to implement the privacy requirements, have to provide good information security, and be in overall compliance.
Learn from the guru of HIPAA compliance
How do Covered Entities and Business Associates and all those that are connected with HIPAA enforcement activity attain compliance? The text in HIPAA is confounding to many professionals. Many words are complex and ambiguous, making its comprehension and interpretation difficult.
It is to help those associated closely with HIPAA enforcement, such as Compliance Directors, CEO, CFO, Privacy Officers, Security Officers, HIPAA Officers, Chief Information Officers, Health Information Managers, Healthcare Counsel/lawyers and Office Managers that MentorHealth, a highly regarded provider of professional trainings for the healthcare industry, will be organizing a learning session.
At this webinar, senior HIPAA compliance professional, Jim Sheldon Dean, who is the founder and director of compliance services at Lewis Creek Systems, LLC, a Vermont-based consulting firm, which he founded in 1982, will give a complete roundup of HIPAA enforcement and the ways in which the provisions of this legislation need to be complied with. The aim of this webinar is to help participants overcome the difficulties and complexities associated with HIPAA compliance. To enroll for this highly valuable learning session, please visit
A complete learning session on all the aspects of HIPAA enforcement
Jim will explain the HIPAA enforcement actions that have taken place, which will help participants to understand why the enforcement took place. It will also help them analyze what could have been done to prevent the incident that led to the enforcement. He will help them assess the unmet requirements and make them understand what they need to do to ensure that the proper policies, procedures, training, and documentation of their application are in place, so that they can prevent problems and limit the organization's exposure in incidents.

This kind of learning is vital when one takes a look at the kind of violations that HIPAA has zeroed in on. Which Covered Entity or Business Associate, would have thought that seemingly mundane and harmless actions as returning copiers to the leasing company without removing the PHI on the hard drive, moving offices without accounting for hard drives stored in a closet, or improperly disposing of printed materials could invite penal actions from HIPAA?
With proper guidance, actions such as these or others that invite penalties from the OCR can be undertaken. Jim will seek to provide learning on these aspects to the participants of this webinar. He will cover the following areas at this session:
o The HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Breach Notification regulations (and the recent changes to them) and how their compliance will be evaluated in enforcement circumstances
o Recent changes to the HIPAA enforcement regulations that increase fines and create new penalty levels, including new penalties for willful neglect of compliance that begin at $10,000
o The information and documentation that needs to be prepared in advance so that you can be ready for an enforcement review or an audit without notice
o The results of prior HHS enforcement actions and audits (and their penalties), including recent actions involving multi-million dollar fines and settlements
o Questions asked in prior audits and enforcement reviews
o Identification of weaknesses in organizational compliance
o Future threats to the security of patient information
o The importance of a good compliance process to help you stay compliant more easily.

Author's Bio: 

Jim Sheldon-Dean is the founder and director of compliance services at Lewis Creek Systems, LLC, a Vermont-based consulting firm founded in 1982, providing information privacy and security regulatory compliance services to a wide variety of health care entities.