Health Information Management

Understand how HIPAA and meaningful use could collide

HIM-HIPAA Insider, May 10, 2011

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One possible fallout from an Office for Civil Rights (OCR) increasing HIPAA enforcement action is the effect on the meaningful use incentive program, according to Mahmood Sher-Jan, MBA, director of product management at ID Experts in Portland, OR. Whether it will pose an obstacle in the effort to qualify for these funds could be another potential complication for organizations required to demonstrate compliance.

It was a question on the minds of participants at the 19th National HIPAA Summit in Washington, DC, in March. Susan McAndrew, JD, OCR's deputy director for health information privacy, said no direct correlation between OCR enforcement and eligibility to participate in the meaningful use incentive program exists. An OCR investigation will not result in an organization's automatic disqualification from meaningful use, she said.
 
However, the meaningful use application requires that organizations certify they are in compliance with a variety of laws and requirements, McAndrew said.
 
Mistakenly misrepresenting your compliance with HIPAA may be a consideration with respect to an organization's continued eligibility for incentive payments, she added.
 
Editor’s note: This article is excerpted from the May issue of Briefings on HIPAA.



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