No matter what type of healthcare organization you manage, all employees must comply with HIPAA regulations and adhere to best patient care practices. According to HIPPA information outlined in Becker’s Health IT & CIO Review, the employees who work regularly with patient data are essential to keeping your organization HIPAA-compliant. They can help you avoid potentially damaging HIPAA violations—once they receive proper HIPAA training. This training also gives healthcare workers the confidence to process and transmit patient medical records.
As you train employees on HIPPA requirements, here are three helpful tips to follow at your organization.
Offer mandatory training.
It’s important to establish a mandatory training for all employees about HIPAA policies and procedures. Online training can make educating your workers accessible–even under a tight budget. To help prevent HIPAA violations, these trainings should be given to new employees and existing staff members. Every employee should fully understand the risks associated with each HIPAA violation as well as the meaning of the compliance standards. You can make these trainings more effective by tailoring them for your employees’ learning styles and offering them in both online and classroom sessions. In addition, regular trainings allow you to update your team on HIPAA policy changes.
Provide social media training.
In the healthcare field, reinforcing social media policies has become an integral part of HIPAA training. It’s important to reinforce strict social media guidelines and make sure employees adhere to them. You’ll want to inform your staff about the ramifications of sharing patient information on social media—whether it’s intentional or accidental. Social media violations can have damaging effects on patient confidentiality and your organization’s reputation at large. Your employees can also benefit from being educated on the consequences of poor social media usage on both their patients and their own careers.
Continually evaluate and identify risks.
To make sure your team adheres to policies, you’ll want to regularly evaluate your employees’ performance with HIPAA compliance. This means identifying risks or problems in your policies early on to prevent any future disasters or harmful situations. You can improve your evaluation process by having an external HIPAA officer audit one of your trainings to make sure that HIPAA information is being communicated properly to your staff.
Even though HIPAA training can be a long and rigorous process, it’s important to make every effort to inform and educate your employees about its importance. With new technologies and communications systems constantly entering the healthcare landscape, it’s your job as a healthcare manager to develop a robust HIPAA training that continually reinforces the proper handling of patient health information.