Which Federal law made substantive changes to Hipaa

Which Federal Law Made Substantive Changes to HIPAA?

People’s health information needs to be safe. HIPAA helps with this, keeping patient data secure.

Interestingly, HIPAA has had many updates since it first started. As healthcare and technology change, other laws have upgraded HIPAA.

Identifying which Federal law made substantive changes to HIPAA is crucial. It helps us understand its evolution.

At American Healthcare Compliance (AHC), we focus on HIPAA. American Healthcare Compliance provides courses on HIPAA compliance.

Reach out to us for more information!

What Is HIPAA?

HIPAA stands for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Created in 1996, HIPAA safeguards healthcare data by ensuring privacy.

Not only that, but it also secures electronic health records.

It is made up of key rules, the Privacy, Security, and Breach Notification ones. They are all critical in protecting sensitive health information.

HIPAA Authorization Characteristics

A HIPAA authorization must include several specific elements. These characteristics ensure that the authorization is valid and legally binding:

  • Details about the data for use or sharing are needed.
  • The individual or group approved to share this information should be named.
  • Indicate who will receive the shared data.
  • An expiration date or event.
  • A statement of the individual’s right to revoke the authorization in writing.

Requirement of HIPAA

It is a requirement Under HIPAA that we keep Patient Health Information (PHI) secret.

It needs to be safe from any unauthorized intervention, keeping patient secrets a top priority. Obe­ying HIPAA law means any involved parties should take steps to secure PHI.

Rules about who can access the details should be in place. The data must be encoded. Staff must be taught to keep it secret. All-access to the PHI must be recorded.

Which Federal Law Made Substantive Changes to HIPAA?

The notable changes to HIPAA came about due to the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act.

This Act, a major amendment to HIPAA, emerged from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA). The HITECH Act upgraded the privacy and security aspects of HIPAA.

He­re are some crucial changes due to the HITECH Act:

  • Expansion of Privacy and Security Provisions

The law enhanced Privacy and Security terms. It spreads HIPAA’s privacy and safety rules to business partners.

These partners must now follow the same guidelines as covered entities. This improves the safety of patients’ personal information.

  • Enforce­d Breach Notification Rules

The HITECH Act mandates that both covered bodies and business partners inform people about any breaches in their healthcare data security.

They must also alert the Health and Human Services Secretary. In certain cases, they may need to tell the media too.

  • Increased Penalties for Non-Compliance

The Act established different tiers of penalties for non-compliance with HIPAA rules. The fines increase for more negligent violations, reaching a maximum of $1.5 million per type of violation annually.

Minimum Necessary Standard

HIPAA includes the Minimum Necessary Standard, essentially this means that when you are dealing with, revealing, or asking for private health data, stick to the basics.

Only touch or share what you need to get your job done. The whole idea of this standard is to stop individuals from looking at or leaking private health information when they do not need to.

It enhances patient privacy and safeguards sensitive health information.

The principle encourages covered entities to evaluate their practices. They should put in policies that restrict access to PHI to only those who need it for their job.

Patients’ Rights Under HIPAA

Under HIPAA, patients have several important rights:

  • Patients can access and obtain copies of their health records.
  • Patients’ rights under HIPAA include the ability to request corrections to their health information.
  • Patients can ask for a list of places that have gotten their health data.
  • They can also ask to limit some ways their information is used and shared.


In summary, which federal law made substantive changes to HIPAA? That would be the HITECH Act. It made some major changes to the first HIPAA rules.

A big part of those changes was how to keep electronic health records safe. HIPAA changed how patient information is cared for and protected in healthcare.

The HITECH Act made HIPAA even stronger. It has improved safety and privacy rules, especially for electronic health records.

Healthcare providers and patients need to understand what HIPAA needs, patient rights, and what the HITECH Act means.

Following HIPAA rules makes sure that health information stays safe and private. This builds trust in healthcare. Learn to follow HIPAA regulations. Do this through AHC’s HIPAA Training for Healthcare Professionals.


What is the HIPAA Private Right of Action?

The HIPAA Private Right of Action means a person’s legal right. They can act against those who breach HIPAA rules.

What does the minimum necessary standard mean?

It is a guideline. It says only use, reveal, or ask for the smallest amount of PHI for any task.

Which statement is incorrect regarding HIPAA compliance?

A misconception is that it is only for electronic records. HIPAA is for all types of PHI.

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