These days, there are more options than ever for remotely accessing healthcare services. Remote video conferencing has become an increasingly popular solution for patients who live far from their physician or need to see a doctor outside of normal business hours. The market for remote video conferencing solutions continues to grow as more healthcare professionals recognize their benefits and implement them into their workflows and practices. But because this market is growing so rapidly, it can be difficult to know which HIPAA-Compliant Video Conferencing are considered best-in-class by informed industry experts, and which ones may lack safeguards against cyber threats or other concerns.
What is HIPAA-Compliant Video Conferencing?
HIPAA-compliant video conferencing solutions feature robust privacy and security protocols that are designed to protect sensitive patient information at all stages of the workflow — before, during, and after a video call has taken place. For example, these systems may include features such as one-way audio or voice recognition, remote disabling, and the ability to “blackout” the screen during sensitive data input. Such a system can help prevent a breach of patient information, particularly if it is used for video appointments. Currently, most secure video conferencing services, whether offered by your health plan or a third-party vendor, are not HIPAA compliant.
Why Is Compliance with HIPAA Important?
Patients have a right to expect that their information is safe. Particularly when they are communicating with their health care providers. A breach of patient information can have devastating consequences. Particularly when sensitive information such as their social security number or other identifiers is released. Health care providers face significant financial penalties if they fail to comply with the HIPAA Privacy Rule and the HIPAA Security Rule.
How Does Video Conferencing Help with HIPAA Compliance?
New technologies and solutions are emerging to help health care providers meet the challenges of protecting patient information. When it comes to secure video conferencing, dedicated solutions are designed for the healthcare industry. These can help ensure compliance with HIPAA. Dedicated HIPAA Compliance video solutions for healthcare include products like secure video rooms that are walled off from the rest of the network. Accessible only via passwords and other passcodes. Such dedicated solutions can help prevent a breach of patient data. Regardless of how many people are in the room simultaneously. As long as they are using the dedicated solution.
How Does Live Streaming Help with HIPAA Compliance?
Live streaming solutions that comply with HIPAA can help with compliance by providing a record of the session. Such a record can help with any future disputes or investigations related to the patient’s visit. With this type of solution, the entire session is recorded and can be accessed for review, including information that was only discussed verbally between the patient and physician.
How Does Audio Conferencing Help with HIPAA Compliance?
Audio conferencing solutions can help with compliance by enabling the health care provider to communicate with the patient remotely in a HIPAA-compliant fashion. This communication is typically only one way. Meaning that the patient would be able to hear the health care provider speak, but the provider would not be able to hear the patient speak. There are some solutions, however, that do enable two-way conversations.
How Does Cloud Technology Help with HIPAA Compliance?
The adoption of cloud-based solutions continues to grow as healthcare organizations look for ways to reduce costs and improve efficiency. When it comes to video conferencing solutions. Cloud-based solutions typically feature the same security and privacy protocols as dedicated solutions. Helping with compliance. Cloud-based solutions can serve as a backup to existing on-premise solutions. Allowing organizations to easily scale up their video communication resources as demand increases.
In addition to helping with compliance. HIPAA-Compliant Video Conferencing can also improve the overall patient experience by allowing them to communicate with their healthcare providers remotely. This can reduce the number of missed appointments and enable patients who live far from their providers to more easily receive care. With so many options available, it can be challenging to determine which solutions are best for your organization. By keeping the challenges of compliance in mind, you can better understand how video conferencing solutions can help resolve them.