HHS releases final HIPAA enforcement rule

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The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) last week issued the final enforcement rule for HIPAA’s administrative simplification sections covering privacy, security and electronic transaction standards. The final rule details how HHS will define violations, determine culpability and the steps that organizations may take to protect themselves, according to the HHS.

The rule “also amends the existing rules relating to the process for imposition of civil money penalties. Among other matters, the final rule clarifies and elaborates upon the investigation process, bases for liability, determination of the penalty amount, grounds for waiver, conduct of the hearing, and the appeal process,” according to a notice posted at the HHS website.