7 Reasons why HIPAA-Compliant Cloud Hosting is more Expensive

Hipaa Compliant Cloud Hosting

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The need for “bells and whistles” in a HIPAA-compliant system is not just for show. These technological “gadgets” are not merely cosmetic. The reason, at a broad level, is that they are necessary because of healthcare regulation established by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). 

As security and patient privacy is vital to the Security Rule and the Privacy Rule, respectively (established by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996), additional technological “gadgets” are required. To better understand why HIPAA is more expensive than a standard IT system, we’ll first look at the Privacy Rule and Security Rules which underpin these healthcare IT infrastructures.

What is the Difference Between HIPAA Privacy Rule & Security Rule?

Now that we’ve examined the two most important aspects of HIPAA compliance when setting up IT systems, let’s look at the Privacy Rule and Security Rule, both outlined in Title II of the healthcare law. In addition to these laws, other federal laws are also critically important in understanding and properly managing HIT systems.

The Privacy Rule sets out the standards for individuals or organizations to examine PHI (e.g., medical records protected by HIPAA). A HIPAA IT system should meet the standards at a more general level. When we look at a system’s security details, we must look at the HIPAA Security Rules. The federal statute sets the boundaries for the Security Rules, according to which the security of ePHI (electronic PHI) must not be compromised by unauthorized persons, 

The Privacy Rule requires covered entities (such as hospitals, medical data clearinghouses, and healthcare plans) to implement a combination of “physical,” “technical,” and “administrative” safeguards to protect patient health information. It is possible that your company has already complied with the Privacy Rule without paying as much attention to the Security Rule up to now. Even so, you will still find that your compliance with the first has fulfilled the Security Rule stipulations.

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Ensure that digital systems are protected and adhere to other best privacy practices to ensure patient safety. Make sure tools are in place to prevent patient data from being accessed or used inappropriately to prevent security violations. Here are some basic protective measures.

Seven Reasons Why HIPAA-Compliant Hosting Is More Expensive Than Typical Hosting.

Here are some key reasons why HIPAA requires a larger budget than a standard data system setup; these elements describe some of the key features you need to avoid costly and damaging infractions.

  1. The Hosted Environmental Privacy: The system you have set up to safeguard your patient’s health information and other sensitive information should be configured and made available only to one protected entity (i.e., only your business).
  2. Fully Managed Firewall: A properly managed firewall is the core of the idea that the HIPAA hosting service is managed. If you use a “fully managed” firewall, you will receive firewall setup, administration, oversight, reporting, and assistance.
  3. Secure VPN:  A virtual private network must be established to encrypt data using standard protocols like Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Internet protocol security (IPsec) or generic routing encryption (GRE).
  4. Encrypted Backup: It is essential to ensure that the ePHI ever is stolen, obviously (the encryption component); however, it is equally important to ensure it is not lost. It is important to have a backup, but it needs to be protected to ensure the information is secured behind a lock and key, exactly like your main system.
  5. Log Management System: You must install logging software to enable the secure control of data access and manipulation. It is certainly not a good idea to ignore possible breaches (especially in light of breaches that violate the breach notification rule), and log management is a simple method to monitor access.
  6. Anti-Malware: It is essential that every healthcare system that includes PHI has strong defenses against malicious code and other attacks.
  7. The SSAE 16 Audit: For a list of an accredited HIPAA host, verify whether it is able to meet the requirements of a crucial industry standard on security and monitoring the Statement of Standards on Attestation Engagements, No. 16 (SSAE 16).
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On a Small Budget, how to Handle HIPAA Regulations

In 2012, federal investigators charged a cardiology practice in Phoenix with violating the HIPAA Privacy Rule. Some might regard $100,000 as an excessive penalty. Before that point, smaller healthcare providers thought the regulations were intended for larger healthcare organizations, such as insurers and hospitals, more than they did for them.

It’s important to remember that getting audited is just one of the ways you might be caught; it is also possible that someone (perhaps a competitor or disgruntled former employee) will discover a weakness in your system and notify others.

Despite these concerns, can you successfully and consistently uphold proper data safeguards as cost-effectively as possible when you need to make your IT systems HIPAA-compliant?

To improve your grades, try the following methods: 

  1. Common Sense 

It is optional to spend hours studying legislation or comprehending sophisticated technology to comply with HIPAA. Rather, your employees must be educated on how to be discreet when dealing with patient data, including specific steps to take. They must also be informed about the Breach Notification Rule, which allows them to know if their data has been compromised.

  1. Keep Upgraded Technically

The Health and Human Services Department assessed 59 healthcare providers for the HIPAA privacy laws. They found that more than half of the organizations needed to meet the requirements. Although that result is not unexpected, it is critical that healthcare professionals understand the laws and avoid penalties.

  1. Approach Help in Need

You must meet HIPAA requirements whether you’re an IT specialist or not. The good news is that the law has been modified, so that covered entities such as healthcare organizations are no longer the sole parties responsible for meeting HIPAA requirements: The HIPAA Omnibus Rule or Final Rule introduced your business associates to the same obligations. That means that if you want to ensure your systems are HIPAA-compliant, you must use a hosting service to collaborate with a firm that will be required to safeguard your data under the BAA that they sign with you if you select to work with a provider. Working with a company that is legally required to keep your data secure is not only a benefit in terms of outside expertise and support but also in terms of coordinating with a firm that must safeguard your data.

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How Much Does HIPAA Hosting Cost?

A provider’s charges may vary dramatically, but now you should know why healthcare-compliant hosting is usually more costly than a regular computer environment. 

Hucu.ai is a HIPAA-compliant Telehealth solution with secure cloud-based data storage which can be accessed from anywhere. Hucu.ai users share text, documents, images, emojis, and videos securely stored in the Hucu.ai encrypted cloud, reducing space utilization on user devices. Communication is optimized through custom collaboration channels, all company channels, patient channels, and direct messaging with the ability to jump easily from channel to channel in context. Configurable availability and notification features improve confidence in the right communication to the right audience at the right time.

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