Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996

The regulatory environment constantly brings new challenges to the medical field, the billing of procedures and the management of practices who operate within the legal framework. HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act has brought federal enforcement to the industry standard for confidentiality. IBA respects the patients right to privacy. As an extension of your practice, IBA enforces the guidelines which protect your patients and their privacy.

Health Information: "Any information, whether oral or recorded in any form or medium that (1) is created or received by a healthcare provider, health plan, public health authority, employer, life insurer, school or university or healthcare clearinghouse; and (2) related to the past, present or future physical or mental health or condition of an individual or the past, present or future payment for the provision of healthcare to an individual."

Protected Health Information: "Health information (including demographic information collected from an individual) created by or received by or received from a healthcare provider, health plan employer, or healthcare clearinghouse (1) that identifies the individual; or (2) with respect to which there is a reasonable basis to believe that the information can be used to identify the individual."

Failure to comply with HIPAA can result in civil and criminal penalties: Any person who knowingly obtains or discloses individually identifiable health information in violation of the Administrative Simplification Regulations faces a fine of up to $50,000, as well as imprisonment up to one year. Offenses committed under false pretenses allow penalties to be increased to a $100,000 fine, and up to five years in prison. Finally, offenses committed with the intent to sell, transfer or use individually identifiable health information for commercial advantage, personal gain or malicious harm permit fine of $250,000 and imprisonment for up to ten years.