Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Essay

1784 Words8 Pages
The Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information, better known as the Privacy Rule, that took effect in April 2003 for large entities and a year later for small ones, was established as the first set of national standards for the protection of health information. This rule was issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to meet the requirement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). The Privacy Rule was born out of a need for health information to be appropriately protected yet still allowing the health information to be shared to ensure quality health care and to protect the public’s health and well being. It allows for the protection of the privacy of the…show more content…
However, the Privacy Rule is only as good as those that are implementing it. Unless effective processes are in place, properly followed, and enforced, there should be much concern for the protection of our private health information. Unfortunately the protection of our medical records is not always as secure as we would like for them to be. In Jane Martin’s article, “Who’s looking at your medical records?” she mentions CNN, Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen. While Cohen was researching a story she stumbled upon her own personal health information online. “There it was,” she stated, “in black, white, and hypertext blue. My annual mammograms; the visits to the podiatrist for the splinter in my foot; the kind of birth control I use – it was all on my health insurance company’s Web site. And that’s not all: The prescription drugs I use were listed on the Web site where I get my prescription drug insurance.” Cohen is not against having the medical records online, she just wants them to be better secured. Donna Boswell and Sara Kraner addressed another situation where our medical records are not secured in their article,” HIPAA and hospitals' privacy enforcement options.” Earlier this year the Federal Trade
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