Final HIPAA Rule Has Sweeping Impact on Covered Entities and Business Associates


On January 25, 2013, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published the highly anticipated Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Omnibus Final Rule (the “Final Rule”). The Final Rule represents a material development in the area of health care privacy, and has important operational consequences for covered entities and business associates. Major changes include the following:

- Final Rule Requires Changes in Breach Notice Policies; Likely to Increase Breach Reporting. The Final Rule eliminates the “significant risk of harm” threshold for breach notification. Under the Final Rule, any impermissible use or disclosure of protected health information (PHI) is presumed to be a breach requiring notification, unless the covered entity or business associate demonstrates through a risk assessment that there is a “low probability that the PHI has been compromised” or unless an exception applies. The Final Rule requires entities to consider at least four “objective” factors in conducting their risk assessments. These changes are likely to increase breach notifications. As a result, affected entities should make a concerted effort to encrypt PHI, since HIPAA breach notification requirements do not apply to PHI that has been encrypted in accordance with HHS guidance. In addition, breach notification policies, procedures and protocols will need to be revised.

Please see full advisory below for more information.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP on:

Popular Topics
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.