The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act was enacted in 1996 to make sure that the working class has access to healthcare coverage if they lose or change jobs.
It was thought that with consolidated patient information, it would be easier for people to switch between insurance providers and continue under similar or identical coverage plans.
HIPAA compliance was made easier with the implementation of DICOM (Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine) and the use of digital radiography (DR) equipment, which could produce DICOM-compliant medical records. The standardization of medical imaging allowed greater data accessibility and faster data transmission. Essentially, without DR equipment, PACS (Picture Archiving and Communications Systems) and DICOM compliance, it’s impossible to cover the four primary purposes of HIPAA, namely:
- Privacy of Health Information
- Security of Electronic Records
- Administrative Simplification
- Insurance Portability
Privacy of Health Information
You can easily restrict access to PACS by implementing authorization protocols. The PACS in your facility contains patient medical records, with each doctor or hospital employee having access to relevant patient information. Effectively, patient information is released on a need-to-know basis, and very few people can access entire patient histories. With fewer data access authorizations, you can ensure a higher degree of health information privacy.
Security of Electronic Records
PACS come installed with a wide range of cyber security protocols, anti-malware software, and other means of circumventing cyber attacks on the system. Authorization protocols that restrict access to patient information add an extra layer of security, which reduces the possibility of unauthorized personnel accessing the data.
The use of electronic medical records and PACS reduces the hassle of patient information management. It’s much easier to categorize electronic data than it is to create systems for hardcopy management. Additionally, PACS allows for simultaneous access to patient histories through multiple screens and users, assuming that people are authorized to access the files. Data sharing becomes convenient, and it’s easier to look up records since these are arranged according to the standards specified by DICOM. You just need to know what DICOM data management protocols to understand how the information’s been organized and follow these protocols to create future records.
The creation of standardized patient histories and using DICOM compliant PACS makes it easier to transfer data between different stakeholders. Insurance providers know that they can go to hospitals to find patient information, and the hospitals can easily find relevant information through their PACS. Instead of insurance companies having to conduct new tests to assess what policies they need to offer to clients, they can easily revisit hospital records. This makes it easier to transfer patients to new insurance providers and create similar insurance policies for consistent healthcare quality.
ExamVue is a premium supplier of digital radiography equipment in the United States. Our products include DR flat panel detector, image acquisition software, and PACS. Get in touch with us today for more information on our services or to place an order for our equipment.