When medical websites are created, they need to comply with the legal laws set by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Though the laws are quite flexible, they can prove to be confusing. So it is important that all medical professionals ensure that their website is HIPAA secure. This will mean that they will not face any financial liabilities, which can run into thousands of dollars.
As doctors and other medical professionals feel under increasing pressure to promote their practices online, there are certain regulations that they need to comply with. They are providing a service to patients, and potential patients, so that they can get a speedy and secure service for their individual medical needs. With patients able to book appointments, order prescriptions, and get health advice online.
However, the medical professionals have to ensure this remains protected health information (PHI). There are steps that you can follow make your website HIPAA secure, so that your practice is protected from any legal action.
How to Make Your Website HIPAA Secure
1. Transport Encryption – as protected health information is being sent over the internet, it I important to make sure that it is encrypted. The easiest way to do this is to make sure that you create a secure website. Ensuring that it is SSL protected so that PHI can’t be accessed by third parties.
2. Backup – a service which many Web Hosts provide so that none of the protected health information that you hold can never be truly lost should there ever be a problem. Either a technical or human error that may have caused a file to have become deleted accidentally.
3. Authorization – only authorized personnel should be allowed access to the protected health information that you hold about your patients. This can usually be achieved by setting access codes that only certain staff members are aware of to make your website HIPAA secure.
4. Integrity – your website can be designed with certain codes so that none of the PHI can be altered or tampered with in any way.
5. Storage Encryption – another element in making your website HIPAA secure is to make sure that the storage facility that you use keeps all the PHI it holds encrypted.
6. Disposal – when it comes to the disposal of a certain file, you need your website to make this a permanent deletion. Then the protected personal information can’t be retrieved in any way.
7. Omnibus/HITECH – it needs to be shown on the web servers that you have a HIPAA Business Association Agreement with the vendors that you are using.
The steps above are the minimal requirements needed in how to make your website HIPAA secure. It is your decision to what degree your particular website requires them. It is important to discuss any issues that you may have with the web designers. All to create a site that has HIPAA compliant web design. You will also need to find a company that can offer you HIPAA compliant web hosting, to make your website HIPAA secure.