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The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) provides data security and privacy provisions to safeguard patients’ protected health information (PHI), including their name, date of birth, phone number, health records, social security number, and financial and insurance details. As such, all healthcare providers must comply with the regulation.
HIPAA compliance software also helps businesses prepare for mandatory federal and state-level audits with simulated audits, training, and reform planning.
Numerous HIPAA compliance software tools exist, and it can be tough to choose the one that best serves your individual business needs. In this buyers guide, we’ve included everything you need to make the right decision.
Ready to find the best HIPAA compliance software tool for your team?
Here's what we'll cover:
What are some common features of HIPAA compliance software?
HIPAA compliance software is software that allows medical practices to ensure compliance with federal HIPAA regulations. These solutions help keep patients' protected health information secure and can also provide risk management, compliance, and audit planning.
It’s important to note that any business that involves patient information is subject to HIPAA compliance, not just doctor’s offices. Outside billing departments that work with medical professionals need to ensure HIPAA compliance as well.
There are two deployment options for remote work software. We’ve listed the characteristics of each option below:
Cloud-based deployment: Vendors host the tool on their own or third-party servers—you can access the solution from a web browser or mobile app. Cloud-based solutions are typically available on monthly or annual subscriptions. Some vendors factor in the number of monthly users when calculating the subscription fee.
On-premise deployment: You host the tool on your own servers and network, which means procuring compatible hardware as well as paying for maintenance, upgrades, support, and data storage. Most on-premise solutions are available for a one-time license fee, making them expensive initially.
Key questions to ask a vendor before you buy:
What kind of support is offered for on-premise deployments?
What data security measures are there in your product?
What is the total cost of ownership (TCO) including one time expenses such as setup fees and data migration?
What level of accessibility does your system support? Are multiple languages supported?
Once you’ve researched the deployment options, the next step is to learn the common features of HIPAA compliance software so you can shortlist products that meet your requirements.
Data security: Protect your patient’s digital privacy and limit access to secure data, allowing your practice to comply with HIPAA regulations.
ChronicWatch’s secure login screen
Audit management: Receive a complete overview of your organization’s existing compliance posture. These mandatory audits span your organization's privacy and security infrastructure and are done to identify risk areas.
HIPAAMATE’s risk management and self-audit system
Risk management: Identify, evaluate, mitigate, and report on risk to ensure you and your team are following all HIPAA compliance guidelines.
Risk management and remediation planning with HIPAA Assessment
Policy training: Train and educate employees on existing and/or new procedures and policies to make sure they are complying with HIPAA guidelines.
HIPAAtrek’s policy compliance and reporting dashboard
Key questions to ask a vendor before you buy: HIPAA compliance software can have more than just the features listed above, so be sure to ask vendors what other functions their software serves that would benefit your business:
Does your solution integrate with third-party applications such as EHR or billing software?
What kind of storage for shared files does your solution offer?
What sort of maintenance downtime should I expect during outages?
Do you offer ongoing training whenever you roll out a new feature?
Does your software automatically update me if any new HIPAA regulations are implemented or changed?
Note: The applications selected in this article are examples to show a feature in context and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations. They are obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.