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What Does Your Business Need to Meet HIPAA Compliance Requirements?

As cyber security threats rise, HIPAA compliance requirements are becoming increasingly complex for businesses. Some industries – including healthcare, business services, education, information technology, and more – have experienced a 200%-300% increase in cyber attacks and breaches over the past decade.1 This has resulted in greater regulatory oversight and rule changes affecting organizations that must meet these new HIPAA compliance requirements. 

So how do these changing regulations affect you? According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, any organization that falls under the umbrella of “covered entities” or “business associates”, in addition to handling protected health information (PHI), must meet HIPAA compliance requirements. This blog will explain exactly who falls into these categories, what solutions are available to keep your business compliant, and how Xceptional can help.

Who Needs To Be HIPAA Compliant?

If your company is a “covered entity” or “business associate” and handles PHI, you are required to follow HIPAA compliance standards. But how do you know if your business belongs to one of these categories? The HHS website describes covered entities as:2

  • Health plans: 
    • Health insurance providers
    • HMOs
    • Employer-sponsored health plans
    • Government programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and military and veterans’ health programs
  • Clearinghouses:
    • Individuals or organizations that process nonstandard health information received from another entity into a standard, or vice versa
  • Healthcare providers that submit HIPAA data electronically, which may include:
    • Doctors
    • Clinics
    • Psychologists
    • Chiropractors
    • Other medical organizations

HHS defines a business associate as any individual or company that helps a covered entity carry out its healthcare functions. Some examples include:

  • A third-party company that processes claims for a health plan
  • MSPs that provide managed IT services to covered entities
  • A law firm whose legal services for a covered entity grants access to PHI
  • An independent transcriptionist who provides transcription services to a clinic

Covered entities working with a business associate must have a written contract or another arrangement that specifies what the business associate has been hired to do and requires the entity to comply with HIPAA.

Meet HIPAA Compliance Requirements With These IT Solutions

If your organization is required to meet HIPAA compliance requirements, you can use several technology solutions to secure your network, simplify reporting, and make managing HIPAA compliance easier. Here are a few you can get started with today:

Get a Risk Assessment Report

Regular risk assessments can help you evaluate the likelihood of a data breach and fill in security gaps wherever necessary. These assessments give you the education, support, and protection your business needs to protect PHI, pass your audits, and maintain HIPAA compliance. Be sure to use an unbiased, third-party auditing team, which typically includes compliance and security experts who can identify and address any vulnerabilities in your systems.

Xceptional’s free security risk assessments are invaluable for getting your organization on the right track to HIPAA compliance. Our experts will identify potential risks in your IT systems and work with you to find the best-fit solutions to improve your network and data security. 

Conduct Penetration Testing & Vulnerability Scans

Monthly or quarterly penetration tests and scans can uncover critical vulnerabilities in your technology systems. Security and compliance providers perform these through manual and automated methods that test your security against simulated real-world threats.

The Xceptional team performs penetration testing of networks, applications, infrastructure, and more, in addition to vulnerability scanning and social engineering to determine how effective your current security controls are. We also provide recommendations for remediating vulnerabilities, lowering risks, and improving your overall security posture.

Strengthen Your Cyber Security

Cyber security is a critical component of protecting PHI and maintaining HIPAA compliance. The HIPAA Security Rule states that entities who process PHI electronically must maintain protections that can defend against any kind of physical, administrative, or technical breach. Hackers can penetrate 93% of business networks,4 so make sure you have solutions in place to limit unauthorized access, backup critical data, and protect your systems from cyber attacks.

At Xceptional, we tailor our network security solutions to your company’s specific security needs. Trust us to keep your protections as strong as possible with regular updates, automatic patching, antivirus programs, 24/7 monitoring, and more. Learn about how Xceptional makes security and compliance simple in our ebook. In it, we discuss the increasing costs and complexity of regulatory compliance demands and how we can help. Download your copy here.

Embrace Xceptional Security and Compliance Solutions Today

From increased regulations to the growing cyber threats associated with remote work and cloud environments, managing HIPAA compliance has never been more challenging. Ensure your business is fully compliant by working with a trusted MSP for security and compliance solutions, guidance, and support. 

Aside from our wide range of network security tools, Xceptional also offers compliance as a service (CaaS). Our Compliance Manager is your end-to-end compliance solution, providing the quarterly scanning, reporting, and documentation needed to meet HIPAA compliance requirements in a convenient platform. 

If you’re ready to reduce the risk, cost, and time it takes to achieve and maintain HIPAA compliance, contact Xceptional today. We’ll work with you to find the best-fit security and compliance solutions your business needs to protect your network – and your customers’ sensitive data – at all times.