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HIPAA




See Also:


The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 was a sweeping piece of healthcare legislation that touched on transferability of health insurance, electronic health care transactions and information security.

The most famous provisions of the legislation involve the protection of the privacy of health insurance information. Under the act, the Department of Health and Human Services published what are commonly known as the HIPAA “privacy” and “security” rules. The former establishes nationwide standards for protection of confidential healthcare information. The latter established nationwide standards for security of electronic health care data.

Under HIPAA, “covered entities” (including most healthcare providers, hospitals and health insurance companies) may not disclose health records without the consent of the patient. Covered entities must also take affirmative steps to protect the privacy of the patient and to ensure compliance by their workforces.