How to Prepare for a HIPAA Audit

Periodic audits are carried out by the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the Department of Health and Human Services to ensure that covered enterprises and their business associates are adhering to HIPAA rules.

The actions businesses can take to ensure they pass a HIPAA compliance audit by putting the right data privacy and security safeguards in place for protected health information (PHI) and electronically protected health information are covered in this article (ePHI).

Preparing for HIPAA Audit

The secret to navigating an OCR HIPAA compliance audit successfully is preparation. Self-assessments to find potential issues with how PHI is handled are the most efficient way to make sure a company is in compliance with HIPAA regulations.

How to Prepare for a HIPAA Audit

In order to avoid a data breach and an OCR visit, these flaws can then be addressed and proactively fixed. Take the necessary steps that are discussed below.

Choosing a security and privacy officer

The organisation needs to designate a person to show the security and privacy measures being taken to protect PHI. The officer should plan recurring reviews and risk evaluations of pertinent procedures.

Every incident or data breach must be documented and made available to the OCR. Contracts with business partners, including those offering HIPAA hosting services, should be checked for compliance.

Placing a focus on staff training

According to HIPAA regulations, any employee who handles PHI or ePHI must receive sufficient training in protecting its privacy and security. Records must be maintained so that auditors can verify this training.

Examining and analysing present regulations

Detailed documentation of all HIPAA compliance-related processes and regulations is required. The documents must be readily available in order to support regular business operations and fulfil audit requirements.

Conducted an internal audit

The best method for identifying organisational areas that need to be reinforced to maintain HIPAA compliance is through internal audits. To determine the degree of system compliance, subject matter experts in the infrastructure, storage, backup, and recovery of ePHI should be enlisted. To enable the concerns to be fixed, comprehensive findings of deficiencies should be produced.

Addressing audit results

Several problems that need to be corrected can be discovered by the internal audit. It is important to have thorough documentation of the procedural adjustments made to bring the organization into compliance.

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