How a Managed IT Services Provider in Austin Can Help Healthcare Organizations Avoid Common Violations

The Threat of HIPAA

A managed IT services provider in Austin can really help your healthcare business avoid being undermined incidentally through social media. This is increasingly essential as social media represents a mode of convenience for many healthcare organizations. However, if you’re not careful, you’re likely to get HIPAA down on your shoulders. If you’re unfamiliar, HIPAA fines are actually impacting to more than just your business.

If you’re using a technology provider for your healthcare operation’s tech needs, then they additionally get fined should your operation be found out of HIPAA compliance. This practice is called shared liability. Naturally, the concept of shared liability acts as an impetus to motivate MSPs into ensuring their clients aren’t out of compliance. Internal tech providers, meanwhile, are subject to your needs and budget. Since HIPAA requirements transition as technology does, this means an internal tech provider is apt to fall behind. Your operation will think everything is functioning as it should, then some subtle bureaucrat will conduct an audit, and you’ll find your business slapped with a $100k+ fine.

Common Areas of Transgression

Social media is an especially pernicious offender in terms of HIPAA regulations, as people incidentally transgress regulations all the time. The right managed IT services provider in Austin can help you understand what’s okay and what isn’t. Additionally, owing to shared liability, such an MSP will always keep you up-to-date on what is and isn’t acceptable in social media. Right now, several areas where there are often transgressions of HIPAA regulations include:

  • Picture sharing
  • PHI incidentally shared without patient consent
  • Digital “gossip”

If you’ve got staff taking pictures in the cafeteria, if a patient is in the background, that could constitute a HIPAA violation. If the patient hasn’t given consent, a clear violation has taken place. The same is true if public health information (PHI) gets shared in the background of a photo without the consent of a patient. Lastly, if you’ve got a “tough customer”, and one or another of your nurses says something about that individual on social media, it can be a violation. Necessarily, some level of training is required for your staff, and procedures must be acquired, made habitual, and strictly enforced. A good rule of thumb is to work with an MSP to establish recurrent training sessions at intervals as tech develops.

Safeguarding Your Healthcare Practice

A managed IT services provider in Austin like Contigo Technology can help you to remain continuously updated as pertains to HIPAA regulations. Compliance is integral in terms of operational safety, patient safety, and competitiveness. Contact us now for an operational review; you could avoid some hefty fines this way.