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OCR Releases Information on What Phase 2 HIPAA Audits Will Look Like

The HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR) recently presented information about the new look of its Phase 2 audit program. The new audits will look little like the old ones, with OCR conducting the audits itself and focusing on...more

HIPAA Security Risk Assessment Tool Released by HHS

HIPAA security risk assessment (SRA) tool was recently made available through HHS. The tool was developed as a collaborative effort between the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC),...more

HHS's New Security Risk Tool for HIPAA Compliance

On March 28, 2014, the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC), in conjunction with the HHS Office for Civil Rights (OCR), released a Security Risk Assessment tool (SRA tool) to assist...more

Government Releases New Tool to Assist with HIPAA Security Rule Risk Assessments

The Office of Civil Rights (OCR), in collaboration with the HHS Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and the Office of General Counsel (OGC), released a new security risk assessment (SRA)...more

Data Breach Wall of Shame: 2013's Highlights and Lessons

Since 2009, the HHS Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) has posted all large data breaches – those that involve 500 or more individuals – online on its so-called “Wall of Shame.” In 2013, 160 large data breaches were reported to...more

FTC and Accretive Health Settle Unfair Business Practice Complaint Centered on Data Security Measures

Accretive Health recently agreed to settle a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) complaint that stems from a July, 2011 incident in which an Accretive employee’s laptop was stolen from his car. As a medical billing and revenue...more

A New Year’s Resolution (And Corrective Action Plan) From OCR: Physician Practice Cited For HIPAA Violations

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) is closing out 2013 with a reminder of the importance of an effective HIPAA compliance program. On December 26, 2013, OCR announced a resolution agreement with a Massachusetts physician...more

Medical practice agrees to payment due to HIPAA data breach

One day after Christmas, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) announced that a Massachusetts-based dermatology practice (Practice) agreed to a $150,000 payment and entered into a...more

HIPAA Security Rule Enforcement Not Yet Meeting Federal Requirements

A recent Office of the Inspector General (OIG) Report reviews progress made by the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) toward enforcement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule following...more

OCR Issues Guidance on HIPAA Refill Reminder Marketing Exception, and other Modifications to Privacy Protections

On September 19, 2013, the Office of Civil Rights of the Department of Health and Human Services (“OCR”) released guidance on a number of privacy protections, the most significant of which relates to the refill reminder...more

OCR Releases Model Notices of Privacy Practices

Under the Privacy Rule, an individual has the right to adequate notice of how a covered entity may use and disclose PHI about the individual, as well as his/her rights and the covered entity’s obligations with respect to that...more

OCR Delays Required Changes to Notices of Privacy Practices for Laboratories

The HHS Office of Civil Rights (OCR) has granted certain clinical laboratories a temporary reprieve from the requirement to update their Notices of Privacy Practices (NPPs) by September 23, 2013, the deadline imposed by the...more

It's Never Too Late To Give Guidance: OCR Starts Releasing HIPAA Omnibus Rule Guidance In Anticipation Of September 23 Compliance...

This has been a busy week for the Department of Health and Human Services / Office for Civil Rights (HHS/OCR). It has started releasing guidance on various provisions of the Omnibus HIPAA final rule (the "Final Rule") in...more

Settlement Emphasizes the Need for HIPAA Risk Management

A HIPAA violation involving a health plan’s failure to erase protected health information from photocopier hard drives has resulted in a $1.2 million settlement. Your risk can be significantly reduced if you adopt and...more

HIPAA Compliance Date: Sept. 23, 2013

Impending HIPAA Compliance Date - As discussed in prior HIPAA Alerts a final 563-page Omnibus HIPAA Rule was released by the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights to strengthen HIPAA’s security...more

A $1.2 Million Photocopier Mistake: Health Plan Settles with HHS in HIPAA Breach Case

We have heard the well-publicized stories of stolen laptops and resulting violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), and we generally recognize the inherent security risks and...more

Health plan pays for failing to erase data on leased equipment: two takeaways for companies handling electronic PHI

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has announced a settlement between the US Department of Health and Human Services and Affinity Health Plan, Inc. to address potential violations of the Health Insurance Portability and...more

Health Law Blog: HIPAA Update: Don't Forget Your Photocopiers

Affinity Health Plan has agreed to pay more than $1.2 million to settle potential violations of the HIPAA Privacy and Security Regulations....more

Health Plan Settles HHS OCR Investigation Related to Photocopier Breach for $1.2m

The Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (HHS OCR) today announced its 4th resolution agreement of 2013....more

First HIPAA Resolution Agreement of 2013 — and it certainly will not be the last

The HHS Office of Civil Rights (OCR) announced its first HIPAA Resolution Agreement of 2013 last week. According to the press release, Idaho State University (ISU) must pay OCR $400,000 and comply with the terms of a...more

HHS Reaches $400,000 Settlement Of Alleged HIPAA Security Rule Violations For Disabling Firewall Protections

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has reported a $400,000 settlement with Idaho State University (ISU) for alleged violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)...more

Practical Tips for APAC Ediscovery

In our ever-shrinking, interconnected world, it is imperative that legal practitioners establish expertise in international ediscovery law. One of the most dramatic evolutions in ediscovery is occurring in the Asia-Pacific...more

HHS Empowers Consumers to Know (and Enforce) their Rights Under HIPAA

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) published on its website a series of factsheets designed to educate consumers unfamiliar with their rights under the Health Insurance...more

The HIPAA Omnibus Final Rule—Data Privacy and Security Implications for Business Associates and Covered Entities

On January 17, 2013, the Office for Civil Rights (‘‘OCR’’) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (‘‘HHS’’) published the HIPAA Omnibus Final Rule (‘‘Final Rule’’) which OCR has trumpeted as carrying ‘‘the most...more

Newly Effective HIPAA Omnibus Rule Makes Sweeping Changes to HIPAA

The long-awaited final omnibus rule (Omnibus Rule) that modifies the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) [1] took effect last week, on March 26, 2013. Leon Rodriguez, Director of the U.S....more

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