With the new wave of HIPAA PHASE 1 & PHASE 2 Audits, (that began in November 2016 and are still running strong in 2017), most dental offices don’t know where to start to streamline their efforts. Turning the other cheek to this big, bold requirement won’t make it go away. And burying your head-in-the-sand will only make the requirements seem uglier when you surface. The sinister HIPAA Auditor may ominously creep into your office, like a grim reaper, ready to rip your HIPAA protocols to shreds.
Protecting your practice is an essential step in setting up your HIPAA compliance protocols. Did you know there are 89 risks you face in private practice every day? Eighty-nine! This is based on research released from noted Dental Financial Prosperity Coach, P. Christopher Music. Christopher elaborates, “Think about it---Did you ever hire the wrong person? What did it cost you? The National Average Cost is $30,000! Let alone the time, effort and headache that it cost to correct that error. Building a system around everything you do within your dental office saves you time, money and mistakes. HIPAA & OSHA compliance protocol systems are no exception. Especially these days with the deep fines and lengthy inspections that come with governmental intervention.” (Listen to an enlightening podcast on How to Set Up HIPAA Systems within your office by clicking here).
We all know, “Knowledge is power”. Discovering and implanting streamlined HIPAA systems is like adding steroids to that power. Results-based HIPAA Compliance is what you want. Applying a tried-and-true system to almost anything we do in dentistry saves us time money and the pain of the misstep.
Results Based HIPAA Compliance is the result of implementing a 3-pronged approach to compliance. Every dental practice owner must be sure to include:
Employee Training: Remember, every employee must be trained to these new HIPAA Omnibus Rules Standards of 2013. This includes full-time and part-time employees, as well as, clinical and non-clinical employees. Rest assured that “Proof-of-Training” will be requested by the HIPAA Auditor typically within the first 5-minutes of his visit. All employees must have this HIPAA Omnibus Rule training prior to handling any Patient Protected Health Information (PHI).
Required Paperwork: Currently, this includes (8) HIPAA forms that should be in-use and functioning within your dental office. These HIPAA forms include: patient, employee, office and business vendor forms that inform and protect your patient’s rights to privacy vs. access of their Protected Health Information (PHI). And a HIPAA Manual—written to the new HIPAA Omnibus Rule standard is required as a Federal Document in every USA healthcare facility.
Facility Protocols: …will be the next stop on “the HIPAA Hitman’s” tour of your dental office. It is not enough to just implement HIPAA Employee Training and the Required Paperwork. You must make sure that you connect-the-dots of your training and paperwork by implementing all of the required HIPAA Facility Protocols. This gets to be challenging because technology is constantly changing and growing.
The best way to get your dental office fully HIPAA compliant is to utilize a checklist. HIPAA Facility Protocols include everything from your patient check-in procedures to how you text patient info after hours. To keep current with these changing protocols, align with a trusted HIPAA resource. One that offers expertise and keeps you informed.
Get informed. Power Up! HIPAA AUDITS: BRING IT!!! Townies got this!
Call us for a copy of our: 2017 HIPAA FACILITY COMPLIANCE CHECKLIST
Jill Obrochta RDH BS,
HIPAA Researcher & Trainer
P. Christopher Music,
Financial Prosperity Coach: