HITECH Deadline Looms for Covered Entities and Business Associates Alike

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In two days, on February 17, 2010, the HITECH revisions to HIPAA become effective for Covered Entities and Business Associates. The changes impact: (1) relationships with and responsibilities of Business Associates, (2) notifications of breaches involving PHI and electronic PHI, (3) HIPAA enforcement and the penalties for violations, and (4) the use of electronic health records. For the first time, Business Associates will be directly regulated by the Security Rule and certain provisions of the Privacy Rule. Consequently, like Covered Entities, Business Associates must assure their compliance with these regulations.

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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.

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