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Compliance for Healthcare: Secure File Transfer Holds the Key

Healthcare compliance depends on secure file transfer

Complying with your doctor’s recommendations is the primary key to feeling good and staying healthy. Complying with the healthcare industry’s security standards and personal data protection requirements holds the key to avoiding an audit failure, paying steep fines, or trying to heal from the impact of a data breach.

Sure, you can meet stringent compliance requirements through legacy or manual processes but doing so puts a substantial burden on your IT staff, who could be working on higher-level initiatives and targeted problem-solving. With the costs to deliver healthcare climbing and strains on staffing, organizations seeking to tame the work needed for compliance would be wise to look into software solutions that can both manage and automate some of the mandates around healthcare cybersecurity.

Related Reading: 8 Ways to Protect Your Healthcare Organization from a Data Breach

Compliance standards laid out by the regulatory bodies often detail the minimum conditions for which an organization can be considered secure, serving as a compliance blueprint for organizations to follow. To meet and exceed these minimum security conditions, healthcare organizations should consider adopting a user-friendly software solution to increase file transfer efficiency, accuracy, and most importantly, security.

Healthcare Compliance Standards Quick Recap

  • HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act): In addition to the mandates surrounding portability of healthcare, HIPAA regulations set the standards for protecting sensitive patient data. HIPAA rules are applied to any company that deals with protected health information (PHI). The act is designed to safeguard medical information through data privacy and security provisions. Secure file transfer solutions, like some managed file transfer software, can help healthcare organizations achieve compliance when sharing or exchanging files with various branches, third-parties, insurers, pharmacies, and more.
  • HITECH (Health Information for Economic and Clinical Health Act): This act is directly connected to HIPAA and is aimed at encouraging the adoption of electronic health and medical records (EHR) to improve patient care quality. It also mandates adherence to expanded data breach notification requirements and for healthcare organizations to secure their ePHI (Electronic Protected Health Information) data with appropriate privacy protections.

Any organization that exchanges PHI or ePHI must be HIPAA and HITECH compliant.

Related Reading: Five Ways to Improve ePHI for HIPAA/HITECH with Managed File Transfer

Recommended File Transfer Protocols to Avoid HIPAA Violations

As healthcare organizations increasingly add to their technology base for the care and keeping of patient records, they need to be mindful that all those electronic records remain safe and secure when being transferred between the many parties involved in providing and administering healthcare – pharmacies, insurers, hospitals, third-party vendors, clinic branches, and more.

Using traditional unsecure file transfer methods like FTP puts organizations at risk of violating HIPAA/HITECH rules. Instead, data needs to be secured with a protocol, such as SFTP, SCP, FTPS, PeSIT, AS2, and HTTP(S) to ensure the protection of sensitive information both at rest and while in motion.

How to Prove Compliance of HIPAA Rules

Your healthcare organization may have already created a comprehensive compliance plan, detailed the strategy and developed specific tactics to meet it, but proving you meet cybersecurity standards can create a time and resource burden.

Should an audit be scheduled, you’ll need to show that you transfer your sensitive data files securely and provide any audit logs requested. A managed file transfer solution, like GoAnywhere, can easily and automatically track file activity such as who can and does view your files, where they are sent to, and how secure they are both when being sent and while on-premises.

GoAnywhere can streamline this entire process, even on those large files, protecting your ePHI and EHR data at all times.

Automation Can Reduce Human Error Risk and More

By automating how your staff manages the many file transfers required by healthcare organizations you can substantially reduce the risk of human error, as well as free up staff for more high-level tasks. Advanced workflows can customize this automation, setting the parameters and event triggers you need for your specific file transfer processes.

How GoAnywhere Can Help Healthcare Organizations Comply

In addition to exchanging data through secure connections such as SFTP, SCP, FTPS, PeSIT, AS2, and HTTP(S) GoAnywhere helps healthcare IT teams meet HIPAA and HITECH regulations with the ease-of- use needed to help users follow compliance requirements like:

  • File transfer monitoring and automatic retrying should a transfer be interrupted
  • Detailed audit logs and reportingto dramatically reduce the staff resources needed for audit reporting
  • Encryption of data using FIPS 140-2 compliant AES and Triple DES algorithms
  • Dashboard-friendly, centralized control of file transfers
  • Granular user permissions: This helps keep access privileges only to the assigned users. It also controls password complexity and sets expiration dates for user access and passwords.
  • Translates data into EDI X12 format and converts EDI X12 documents to other formats
  • Cloud flexibility that meet the guidelines set for by the healthcare industry
  • Secure mail for sending ad hoc files through email with HTTPS download links

Healthcare Compliance

To see how GoAnywhere can make complying with the strict healthcare industry regulations easier, more efficient, and cost-effective, check out one of our personalized demonstrations. We know your time is valuable, so we offer 15-, 30- and 60-minute demos depending on your needs for a healthy, compliant file transfer process.

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