New HIPAA Rules for Text Messaging & Email

Duration: 90 Minutes
Instructor: Paul R. Hales
Webinar Id: 802243


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This webinar focuses on HIPAA Rules for transmitting informational email and text messages to patients over an electronic communications network.


Regular (unencrypted) Email and Text Messaging are effective engagement and communication tools that patients like and have the right to use.

A simple 3 Step HIPAA Safeguard fully protects Covered Entities from violating both HIPAA and the TCPA (Telephone Consumer Protection Act) to ward off expensive TCPA class actions. The Internet is awash with mis-information about Health Care Email and Text Messaging that can lead Covered Entities into serious trouble.

HIPAA Rules generated by the HITECH Act and OCR guidance clearly explain how Covered Entities must comply with a patient’s right to communicate by unencrypted Email and Text Messaging. The new HIPAA Rules and a directive from the CMS Center for Clinical Standards and Quality/Survey & Certification Group also clarify when Covered Entities must use encrypted Email and Text Messages when communicating PHI.

This webinar will explain how Covered Entities can protect themselves from HIPAA and TCPA violations by following the simple 3 Step Safeguard to communicate with patients using unencrypted Email and Text Messages. It also will explain the Emails and Text Messages that OCR and CMS say must be encrypted.

Why you should Attend: You will find out how to use and document the 3 Step Safeguard to protect your organization when communicating with patients by regular Email and Text Message.

The 3 Step Safeguard is a complete “Safe Harbor” from HIPAA and TCPA violations and exposure to unquestionable, serious Risks if you don’t take advantage of this safeguard.

Areas Covered in the Session: The two key laws - HIPAA and the TCPA

  • HIPAA Rules for Email & Text Messaging and a Patient's absolute right to receive PHI by standard (unencrypted) Email & Text Message
  • Key Definitions including how HIPAA defines PHI - it's not just medical information about, for example, a diagnosis, surgical procedure or prescription
  • 3 Step Complete Safeguard for sending Emails & Text Messages to Patients - the 3 simple steps that protect Covered Entities from HIPAA and TCPA violations while meeting the patient's right to communicate by standard, unencrypted Email and Text Message
  • Busting a dangerous Myth - the worthless TCPA “Healthcare Treatment Text Message Exemption”
  • Emails and Text Messages OCR and CMS say you must Encrypt
  • Tips for Enterprise-wide Compliance
  • Brief review of HIPAA and the TCPA
  • How HIPAA defines PHI - it's not just medical information about, for example, a diagnosis, surgical procedure or prescription
  • Patient Right to receive PHI by standard (unencrypted) Email & Text Message
  • The simple 3 Step HIPAA Safeguard that protects Covered Entities from HIPAA and TCPA violations when complying with patient right to communicate by standard, unencrypted Email and Text Message
  • Worthless, dangerous “Healthcare Treatment Message Exemption” based on widespread misunderstanding of FCC 2015 TCPA Order
  • When Covered Entities must encrypt Emails and Text Messages

Who Will Benefit: Health Care Covered Entities
  • Health Care Providers
    • Clinics
    • Hospitals
    • Health Care Practices of all types and sizes
    • Physical, Occupational and Behavioral Therapists
  • Health Plans
    • Group Health Plan Administrators
    • Third Party Group Health Plan Administrators
    • Health Plan Administrators
  • Personnel
    • Executive Management – all Covered Entities
    • Compliance Committee – Covered Entity Board of Trustees
    • Practice Managers – Covered Entities
    • Chief Compliance Officer – all Covered Entities
    • HIPAA Compliance Officials – Privacy and Security
    • Patient Engagement and Marketing Specialists
    • Patient Outreach Coordinators
    • Risk Managers
    • Covered Entity Owners and Senior Management
    • Compliance Committee – Physician, Practitioner-owned Covered Entities
    • Attorneys for Covered Entities – In-house and Outside Counsel
  • Vendors and Business Associates
    • Vendors of Email and Text Message patient engagement services
    • Billing companies
    • Collection Agencies
    • Practice Management companies
    • Vendors of patient satisfaction surveys using Email and Text Messages
    • Health Care Marketing Consultants
    • Health Care Compliance Consultants
    • Law Firms

    Speaker Profile
    Paul R. Hales, J.D. is widely recognized for his expert knowledge and ability to explain the HIPAA Rules clearly in plain language. Paul is an attorney licensed to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States and a graduate of Columbia University Law School with an international practice in HIPAA privacy and security. He is the author of all content in The HIPAA E-Tool®, an Internet-based, complete HIPAA compliance solution with separate editions for Covered Entities, Business Associates, Health Plans and Third Party Administrators.

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