Medical records contain critical information that doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals must have available for effective treatment of patients, regardless of their work locations. Like many businesses, healthcare workers are also often working remotely. This makes paper files unavailable without time-consuming and error-prone activities, such as copying and faxing. Document management systems (DMS) that incorporate HIPAA compliant features transform paper handling into an electronic mode of document creation, editing, and sharing – all designed with critical healthcare factors in mind:
- Boosting efficiency as opposed to handling paper documents
- Avoiding accidental lost or missing documents
- HIPAA compliance
- Improved patient care with fast access to medical records – from anywhere
- Security – encrypted documents are backed up to prevent data loss or corruption
DMS avoids the delays associated with copying and faxing documents to doctors, nurses, or other authorized parties. Faxing introduces potential issues that can impact medical action:
- Delays caused in identifying the documents to be faxed
- Possible unavailability of the fax machine itself
- Sending to the wrong fax number – delaying response and possibly exposing information to unauthorized parties
- Technical issues that impact image quality, requiring re-sending of faxed documents
All of these factors can extend the time between accessing information and treating the patient – an unacceptable situation.
Health Benefits of Electronic Document Management
Migrating document storage to a HIPAA compliant document management system aids in the prevention of disease within medical institutions. Electronic Personal Health Information (ePHI) is all created and stored electronically, with no physical documents. This means fewer administrative or healthcare workers actually handling paperwork and passing it along to other individuals. With recent requirements for social distancing and remote work, electronic distribution and collaboration provide significant advantages for several reasons:
- Create, distribute and edit documents electronically – with no human contact required.
- Controlling information by security roles so that only specific information is available based on each individual’s authority level.
- Doctors and nurses working remotely have the same level of access regardless of their location or the type of device they’re comfortable working with – desktop or laptop computer, tablet, or smartphone.
HIPAA Rules for Healthcare Providers
Maintaining HIPAA compliance requires adherence to all rules for maintaining and protecting ePHI, including:
Privacy Rule – the HIPAA privacy rule requires providers to take all appropriate safeguards needed to protect personal health information privacy. This rule also sets specific limits regarding the disclosure and use of information that can be made without authorization from the patient.
Enforcement Rule – this rule both provides provisions related to compliance investigations, and also imposes penalties for violations and sets procedures for hearings.
Breach Notification Rule – report any breach of health information under this rule. The rule also defines what constitutes a breach.
Patient Safety Rule – this rule covers patient safety and quality, and creates a voluntary system of reporting to resolve any issues related to patient safety and quality of health care, including medical errors.
Administrative Simplification Rules – in addition to the above rules, this rule sets standards involving the handling and transfer of medical record information. It sets specific standards for different medical transactions such as diagnosis, payments, and claims.
How iCORE Assures HIPAA Compliance
Implementing a document management system specifically designed for doctors, dentists, and other healthcare institutions can ease the burden of HIPAA compliance, while also providing a cost-effective solution. iCORE assures adopters of the application with adherence to HIPAA rules with special attention to five HIPAA government technical requirements:
Security – 2048-bit encryption secures all data transmitted or exchanged through iCORE
Authentication – multi-layer validation ensures that users who access the application are who they present themselves to me
Access Control – only authorized and recognized devices can access the application – users are also logged off after established time limits
Audit Controls – iCORE provides immediate audit logs of all activity made by a user, available for HIPAA auditors
Data Integrity – original data must maintain its original and encrypted form. iCORE ensures this data integrity requirement for HIPAA compliance.
HIPAA administrative requirement – iCORE satisfies HIPAA’s 6-year email retention by maintaining HIPAA compliant servers that store encrypted original emails for the required duration.
iCORE not only meets all the technical and government requirements to maintain HIPAA compliance, it facilitates access by healthcare professionals who work remotely or from home offices. Medical emails can contain large files such as x-rays or other medical content. iCORE supports files with no limit to file size.
Mac Copy – Keeping Your Medical Records Secure and Available
Mac Copy works with healthcare institutions to provide cost-effective, HIPAA compliant document management solutions.
Working with technology leaders of multifunction printers and cloud-based document management systems, Mac Copy helps our customers realize the benefits of implementing technology-based business solutions.
Contact Mac Copy to discuss your needs with our experienced technical consultants.