Healthcare privacy and security issues rose to the forefront in 2010 thanks, in large part, to the HITECH Act, which led to many new regulations as well as a public list of major health information breaches.
When the HITECH Act was enacted early in 2009, much was made of its provisions calling for tougher enforcement of the HIPAA privacy and security rules. But we're still waiting for ramped-up enforcement to begin.
The Office of the Inspector General will scrutinize the privacy and security policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, as well as the details of the HITECH Act electronic health record incentive program.
As hospitals and clinics develop strategies for complying with the privacy and security provisions of the HITECH Act and HIPAA, they must be careful not to overlook the additional risks involved in using wireless technologies.