Hipaa Standards

Written by Dina Kayed
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The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) sets firm standards for the healthcare industry. These standards require healthcare institutions everywhere to improve the confidentiality with which they handle data associated with medical services. Many people suppose that these standards where generated solely by the federal government, when in fact the standards were set largely according to recommendations from the private sector.

Adopting HIPAA Standards

Even though HIPAA is a federal law, the Clinton Administration collaborated with the private sector in order to design a framework which would provide the highest standards possible for the healthcare industry. The American National Standards Institute helped in the setting of these standards by contributing valuable experience and judgment. Other non-governmental institutions that help to regulate private sector standards also assisted in the creation of HIPAA standards.

HIPAA's national standards were created with the goal of providing people with maximal privacy and granting them more control over their health decisions and information. These standards also prevent employers and staff from overstepping their professional limits, which in the past has led to intrusions regarding personal privacy. After careful evaluation, HIPAA's standards were chosen based largely on whether or not they conformed to overarching guidelines provided by the federal government.

HIPAA's standards now influence virtually every transaction in healthcare departments. Meeting those standards, however, continues to represent a challenge for healthcare organizations large and small. Relying upon the expertise of outside consultants has proven to be one effective way prevent essential breaches in confidentiality.

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