HIPAA Compliance – Why It Plays a Major Role in Protecting Data Privacy in Healthcare Chat Apps?

Importance of HIPAA Compliance

How you would intake the feeling if someone explains randomly about your health issue and the proceeding treatment for it?

Well, this pretends you to doubt your doctor or the hospital.

This is how the action of privacy rules and security comes into account.

Ensuring the information is secure from the leakage to any unauthorized access is significant regardless of the industry. Healthcare organization is no less compared to other industries.

Nowadays, we are more convinced that our “day-to-day living” is made easy with a quite huge number of healthcare apps, but the healthcare apps have their pitfalls as well

What is HIPAA compliance?

HIPAA stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, is a United States Federal Law that has been created to protect sensitive patient health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent. 

What is PHI?

PHI stands for Protected Health Information that is there in a medical record used to identify an individual. PHI is used to create, used or disclosed to a covered entity or their business associate in the course of providing a health care service

PHI includes informations

  • Medical records that from CT Scan to a blood test results.
  • Billing records and payment procedures at any medical billing office.
  • Conversations among any parties that includes you and your doctors, your doctors and their staff, your insurance company and your health provider, etc.
  • Any notes, texts, video chats, emails, and other correspondence.

Blocking the Loopholes in the Healthcare Security Breaches

As we discussed earlier, these apps have a couple of setbacks in protecting, maintaining medical records and personal information of the patients. To block such loopholes, the United States Congress introduced HIPAA Act (Health Insurance Portability And Accountability Act) in the year 1996. The act was invented to the potential for the healthcare apps with the overall security for the medical reports and personal information of the patients.

The Significant Things You Should Know About HIPAA Compliant Messaging API

The prime privacy rules of HIPAA compliance covers the entities as well as the business associations. It describes what qualifies as per PHI (Protected Health Information) and the person responsible for not going to leak the information. The security rules of medical data are associated with certain protective factors were storing or transmitting medical information through electronic devices and safeguarding the guideline of PHI.

Protection Methods Categorized As Per the Guidelines

  • Administrative
  • Physical
  • Technical

Some Most Common HIPAA Violations That Are Occurred in the Healthcare Industry:

Hippa Violations chart
  • Electronic Health Record (EHR) Breach
  • Stolen Computers, Smartphones & other devices
  • Sending PHI to other patients
  • Malware or cyberattack or hackings
  • Social Media Post
  • Office Break-in

As most of the healthcare apps implement a certain set of security layers. When it comes to healthcare communication apps which is completely enhancing the culture of healthcare communication into a different level. As the unsecured communication with patients can result in HIPAA violation which will cause penalties up to $50,000 per incident which has to be protected.

“In a survey, it is found that 89% of respondents admitted to use 3 to 4 chat apps to communicate more effectively with patients and co-workers.”

Here, we have mentioned some factors that are responsible for securing the medical information transmitted in healthcare communication apps.

Listing Entities Must comply with HIPAA Chat APPs

Today when everything is about digitalization, it has become vital to have a great end towards the increase in security risks facing the healthcare data.

Let’s have a look at some of the entities that follows HIPAA Chat App regulations for their betterment,

  1. Health plans
  2. Healthcare clearinghouses
  3. Healthcare provides that includes doctors, hospitals, nursing homes, and pharmacies
  4. HIPAA can also be applied to the covered entities business associates that deal with financial and administrative transactions electronically.

Impact of HIPAA Compliance Over healthcare App

Today the healthcare industry has explored a lot with advanced technology of secure real time communication. Thus, have made a precise increase in modern healthcare application.

However, it is very important to make the patient recognize and experience the greatness of technology while protecting their privacy and healthcare information. Mostly, the HIPAA compliant chat messages often contain protected health information (PHI), that is the way happened to be considering HIPAA compliance while building messaging app.

Chat APIs and SDKs are the available instruments with numerous benefits. APIs allow a secure mode of sharing and transfer of real-time data between the healthcare providers and patients which is one of the key roles that’s considered when implementing any healthcare software.

Moreover while developing a healthcare application, the developer takes at most care by monitoring and avoiding HIPAA violation. Thus, ensures the safety measures while dealing with patients healthcare information. APIs security also ensures multi-level data protection by providing powerful compliance issues prevention tools.

Ready to take your business to next level with our APIs & SDKs?

Benefits of Using HIPAA Compliant Chat API & SDK

Nowadays, chat applications have spread over its wings widely across the healthcare industry by means of telemedicine or HIPAA compliant healthcare applications.

With telemedicine, now patients can receive remote consultations and prescriptions, doctors can share the medical reports such as x-rays and diagnostic test results with their colleagues on the other side anywhere in the world within seconds. All this is performed ensuring the protection towards patients health information via HIPAA compliant chat apps.

Although, there are many popular chat apps but still all of them are not that appropriate for healthcare professionals as they all are inadequate with HIPAA security and patient privacy.

Despite this, following HIPAA guidelines in all communications raises the standard of communication in the overall medical care sector.

Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of HIPAA compliant chat apps

    1.Remote Care

    As the pandemics have gained a lot of attention, this telemedicine messaging application has got the privilege to diagnose the patients by connecting them to the doctors.

    Moreover, the patients do not have to visit a hospital waiting room. This real-time HIPAA compliant healthcare application allows patients to share details with their doctors via voice, video, text and video consultation software ensuring immediate care.

    2. Simplifying the Diagnosis and Treatment

    Having the best HIPAA compliant messaging app improves the coordination between physicians and specialists by placing everyone on the same page. Eventually, helps the doctors to reach the correct diagnosis more quickly.

    3. High-end efficiency

    Reduces the time consumption over the non-essential tasks that includes walking from one place to another, etc. Therefore, it enhances the optimal use of medical staff which is good for patients as well as for administration.It automatically enables the cost saving without cutting the quality of care

    4. Reduces Response Times

    Sometimes, it might happen where the patient is in need of extreme medical care. Here the HIPAA compliant live chat apps can provide the most needed space. Instead of having to wait for tests results to be delivered physically, medical professionals can receive these test results instantly via chat.

Factors Responsible for Securing a Healthcare Chat App From Being HIPAA Violated

  • User Authentication System Should Be Unique
  • Secure Infrastructure
  • Encryption of Data
  • HIPAA Compliance Certification

User Authentication System Should Be Unique

As technology drives positively, the chances of looming threats increases. User authentication is one of the key strategies to safeguard logging off the app from unauthorized access. Although, this is the most basic technology that most of the chat app providers possess.

Secure Infrastructure

Whatever the number of users, the healthcare chat app must have the potential to withstand the communication risk carried between both the servers. Healthcare communication platform is one of its kinds where the security against breaches is high. A secure infrastructure whether its on-premises or on-cloud hosting should have the capability to solve the healthcare biggest communication risks.

hipaa compliant chat api

Encryption of Data

Sharing of files, texts, reports are the major actions carried in a healthcare chat app. Encryption of messages that are transmitted from several devices over different networks is stored. End-to-end encryption is the key to store the data on the device temporarily and transmitting to other users or devices where only the user can access it. This heightens the value of security in healthcare chat apps.

HIPAA Compliance Certification

hipaa compliant messaging api

As some of the healthcare chat app providers in the market fail in implementing HIPAA compliant chat API Applications, thus their security and privacy levels are low. The repercussions of non-compliance to HIPAA could lead to leakage of medical reports which will end up in a great deal of penalties to the healthcare application.

“The non-compliance to HIPAA policy is a great deal for paying the penalties in thousand of dollars and loss of your healthcare reputation.”

So, what’s the ideal way to secure & manage your healthcare communication under one roof?

Counting on a superlative healthcare chat app providers with HIPAA Compliant is the genuine idea that every healthcare organization must possess to secure their communication with patients.

See our complete guide on how to build chat app for healthcare

Right from Texting to Video Calling with Patients, Don’t Get Caught on Hackers Sight

10+ years of accomplishments in the real-time communication industry, MirrorFly ensures to solve the biggest communication threats in the healthcare industry with a communication solution. With HIPAA compliance, MirrorFly understands the security threats to help by protecting your digital healthcare apps and creating a secure healthcare communication platform for your doctors and patients to communicate effectively. Driving better patient outcomes with better communication is what every healthcare organization urges.

HIPAA Complaint Video Conferencing Solution
Parthiba is a Product Marketer, helping providers of the various industries like healthcare, education, etc., to elevate their conversation value with the help of powerful communication solutions to drive better communication experience.