Putting the "P" in HIPAA: ONC Looks at How Portability Can Promote Interoperability

September 5, 2018 | Strategic Insights for Health System


​The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) can be "a foundation for interoperability," according to the authors of an August 30, 2018, article from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology's (ONC) Health IT Buzz. The authors focus on how the "P" in HIPAA signifies "the secure portability—or the flow—of health information across the health ecosystem." With "limited exceptions," the authors say, the HIPAA privacy rule provides individuals with the right to request and receive copies of information in their medical records maintained by a covered entity. Covered entities, such as healthcare providers or health plans, must transmit health information within 30 days of these requests, but are "strongly encouraged" to provide this access much sooner, the authors say.

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