The digital period has transformed the way people do business. Apart from being able to conduct operations remotely, new tools and technologies also allowed the ease and convenience of outsourcing.
Gone are the days when you have no choice but to limit yourself to partners near your base of operations. Thanks to the entrance of digital communication channels, you can work with an outsourced team from halfway across the globe.
Ultimately, this development reduces your overhead expenses and gives you easy access to world-class talents. However, with the good comes the bad. Or, at least, the somewhat challenging. Without the right measures, giving an outsourced team access to pertinent data could put your business’s privacy at risk.
Cyberattack cases increased by 29% in the current year. The constant exchange of information across digital platforms may increase the chances of data falling into the wrong hands. If your business falls victim to a security breach, hackers can and will profit off the data they’ve procured.
At the same time, your business’s integrity gets compromised, making you lose clients and incur hefty penalties. If you’re planning to outsource a business process, you should find a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliant outsourcing partner.
What is HIPAA, and Why Does it Matter?
Good outsourcing solutions can optimize your business processes in several ways. But that can sometimes come at a cost. For instance, allowing third-party access to your organization’s data equates to opening up another point of entry for hackers. And if your chosen business partner fails to impose strict privacy and security protocols, that would make it easier for a cybercriminal to attack.
The subject of cyberattacks is most critical if you’re in the healthcare sector. The cache of data in your hands contains sensitive information, such as patient records. That information has real monetary value and could be a quick source of ill-gotten profit for hackers. Fortunately, the HIPAA seeks to address this risk.
Introduced in 1996, HIPAA champions two goals. The first is to provide health coverage to individuals that are in between jobs. The second is to ensure that the patients’ personal and health information is protected to prevent healthcare fraud. That is achieved via strict data security standards to which stakeholders need to comply.
HIPAA made the day-to-day operations of healthcare entities more manageable through the digitalisation of information. The transition has allowed convenient sharing of data between healthcare providers and stakeholders. The law also assigned accountability to any business associate tapped by a healthcare provider through stringent HIPAA compliance measures to reduce the risk of a data breach.
If you’re in the healthcare sector, you need to regularly check whether you’re compliant with HIPAA guidelines. To do that, here are a few recommendations.
- Clearly define service agreements with your business associates, keeping HIPAA compliance in mind.
- Audit business associates to ensure strict and consistent HIPAA adherence.
- Gather proper documentation of due HIPAA diligence.
Why You Should Work with a HIPAA-compliant Outsourcing Partner
Working with a HIPAA-compliant business associate means sharing responsibility and accountability. In addition, partnering with a third-agency service that shares the same principles as you do allows you to operate your business with peace of mind, knowing that your outsourced partner is doing their part in securing patient information.
It’s essential to define the term “business associate.” As per the HIPAA Privacy Rule, a business associate could be any of the following:
- Third-party admin assisting with claims processing
- CPA services requiring access to patient information
- Attorney whose duties require access to patient information
- Consultant performing hospital utilisation reviews
- Healthcare clearinghouse
- Independent medical transcriptionist
- Pharmacy benefits manager handling a health plan’s pharmacist network
When looking for an outsourcing partner, HIPAA compliance should help you shortlist your candidates. One name you may consider is EB Call Center, a HIPAA-certified agency. The organisation’s HIPAA compliance certification process was overseen by the Compliancy Group. The audit covered six core components of data privacy:
- Security Standards
- Asset and Device
- Physical Site
- Security IT Risk Analysis
- Privacy Standards
- Hitech Subtitle
These audits make up a robust security system that considers administrative, physical, and technical safeguard requirements. While the agency’s main thrust is to remain proactive when it comes to the risk of a data breach, EB Call Center also takes pride in its readiness to address the problem should it happen.
Keep Your Business HIPAA healthy
You can’t go wrong with looking for HIPAA compliance when narrowing down your outsourcing options. Given the real and serious threat of cybercrimes and their financial repercussions, you can’t risk it. With a HIPAA-compliant organisation, you can rest assured that you’re in tandem with a business entity that carries out the same level of care and scrutiny when dealing with sensitive client information as you do.
If you’re looking for a HIPAA-compliant outsourcing partner, check out the business solutions offered by EB Call Center. Our primary goal is to help you simplify your business processes and maximise your organisation’s growth. Contact us today to learn more!