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Understanding HIPAA

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Understanding HIPAA is a vital part of working in a healthcare setting, whether you’re clinical or non-clinical staff. At Global Arena, we’ve designed our eLearning course, Understanding HIPAA to give foundational knowledge to anyone handling protected information. This course helps employees and freelancers alike meet safety standards and better grasp the intricacies of keeping patient data secure.

HIPAA Training Programs are important not only for preventing breaches, including ID crimes, but also for detecting those incidents. Any worker who handles or has access to Protected Health Information (PHI) must understand their role and responsibilities.

Understanding HIPAA is available as an interactive e-learning course. The course is designed for freelancers, employees, and teams working in industries and facilities that handle PHI. This HIPAA training program is designed for people with all levels of HIPAA awareness. New hires with no experience protecting PHI and abiding by HIPAA standards learn best practices and how to apply them on the job. Clinical and long-time workers who could use a refresh as part of training goals come away with renewed understanding.

The importance of HIPAA and PHI

What constitutes Protected Health Information?

As anyone in contact with PHI requires HIPAA training, it’s important to know what constitutes PHI in the first place. Protected Health Information covers all details that could be used to identify a patient. Including but not limited to:

  • An Individual’s full name, address, birth date, demographics, and social security number.
  • An individual’s past, present, or future physical or mental health or condition.
  • The provision of healthcare to the individual.
  • The past, present, or future payment for the provision of healthcare.

Protected Health Information must never be disclosed, released, distributed, or sold in any way. Breaches of HIPAA are extremely serious and require immediate handling. The proper procedure for handling breaches varies from case to case, depending on severity. HIPAA training helps mitigate the risks by preventing breaches before they happen.

Who’s Responsible for Protecting Patient Data?

Global Arena’s eLearning course, Understanding HIPAA, is applicable to anyone working in a healthcare setting: directly or tangentially. HIPAA standards apply to anyone in contact with PHI. This includes:

  • Health Care Providers: Health care providers include doctors and other clinical staff, interpreters, hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and nursing homes. It’s not dependent on the size of the office: even small physician practices need proper HIPAA training for their personnel.
  • Health Plans: This is a “tangential” category, including insurance companies, HMOS, and Medicaid workers.
  • Health Care Clearinghouses: This category covers entities that forward information from healthcare facilities to insurance payers. All employees must have HIPAA knowledge.
  • Covered Entities’ Business Associates: This includes employees and companies who work with healthcare facilities but don’t work directly with patients. They may work in claims processing, administration, or any capacity that facilitates data transmission of protected health information.

HIPAA is the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. This Act requires that all covered entities and business associates provide HIPAA training to their workforce. Global Arena’s eLearning course makes it quick and easy to bring all participants up to speed. In less than an hour they’ll come away with immediately applicable knowledge and the confidence to handle any potential situation.

Course Description

The course opens with foundational knowledge about the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. This includes a quick history of the HIPAA, as well as information about why and how it came to exist. Our goal is to allow our participants to better understand the context in which the Act was established. It’s also important to understand why the Act is relevant to every worker in America. The Act has broad-reaching implications and expands far past the healthcare industry.

The next module covers the importance of protecting PHI from both a legal and personal standpoint. This highlights the standards and best practices for using the Act on an everyday basis. The course extensively covers the Privacy Rule, an integral part of adhering to HIPAA guidelines. Participants will be able to better apply the concepts of data protection and anonymity to their work. This module also covers Administrative Simplification: using reference numbers instead of PHI to identify patients or clients. This is vital to appropriate conduct while on-the-job. The module closes with quick tips for remaining HIPAA-compliant no matter the circumstances.

The final module focuses on how to act in case of a breach. This includes information about how to identify, fix, and report possible violations. While course participants will have the skills to avoid breaches, sometimes they’re unavoidable. When they happen, the best thing to do is to handle them quickly and within HIPAA guidelines. Understanding HIPAA will encourage the participants to contact their on-site representative and/or direct supervisor immediately to repair and prevent breaches.

Duration and Format

The course is timed to last for 30-45 minutes. It consists of three modules, each with interactive mini-review activities. The course concludes with a final review, an exam, and a certificate upon completion and a passing exam result. Each module consists of a variety of informational slides, both lecture and interactive. This broadly engages participants, ensures information retention, and encourages application. The mix of different slides adds not only visual interest but targets different learning styles to fit all needs.

The course is entirely online and easily accessible from our e-learning platform. It requires no downloads or special permissions. As an employer, there’s another advantage to using our system: you’re able to track your employees’ progress and completion rates. If you’re working as an independent contractor, you can access your account any time and see your status. You also have full access to our course catalogue and resource.

The information is updated regularly to meet current standards. Courses can be taken within one year of purchase. After one year, if the course has not been completed, the program will be eliminated from the trainee’s dashboard. Certificates are accessible at any time. Our eLearning courses are easily accessible from your mobile device. If you’re working with an organization, understanding HIPAA is further customizable to fit your team’s needs. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or for more information.