Ethics & Compliance
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)
“HIPAA” is an acronym for the Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act of 1996 (August 21), Public Law 104-191, which amended the Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986. Also known as the Kennedy-Kassebaum Act, the Act includes a section, Title II, entitled Administrative Simplification, requiring:
- Improved efficiency in healthcare delivery by standardizing electronic data interchange.
- Protection of confidentiality and security of health data through setting and enforcing standards.
More specifically, HIPAA called upon the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to publish new rules that will ensure:
- Standardization of electronic patient health, administrative and financial data.
- Unique health identifiers for individuals, employers, health plans and health care providers.
- Security standards protecting the confidentiality and integrity of “individually identifiable health information” past, present or future.