Working in the healthcare space is incredibly rewarding. Connecting patients with healthcare products and services that are going to make their lives easier is our ultimate goal at Prizm Media, and it feels amazing when we are able to knock it out of the park for our healthcare partners.
Our success lies in our commitment to compliance. That’s our brand promise. More specifically, how we protect patient information when working with our healthcare partners. While it sounds simple, implementing compliance into your business can be much more complicated than it sounds. Healthcare compliance can be very tricky, especially when technology and regulations are always changing.
I wanted to share some of the important lessons I’ve learned about compliance through my experience in the healthcare space:
Know It Inside and Out
This is the most important lesson – and one that so many in our space have learned the hard way: know the regulations, and what they mean for your business. The major piece of compliance legislation in our space is HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). You would be amazed at how many companies within this sector have not taken the time to become experts on HIPAA.
Whether you are a medical professional, a healthcare service provider, or even just a business that works with healthcare providers, you need to know that HIPAA applies to you. There are so many great resources online about how to make sure that you are operating in a way that is HIPAA compliant. There is just no excuse for not knowing. And honestly? The consequences and fines for not being compliant are significant and will absolutely put your business at risk.
Apply Compliance to your Culture
Lots of companies have a dedicated team to ensure that their processes are compliant, and I think that’s great. I would suggest trying to take that one step further. While it is necessary to have your sales and implementation team understand the ins and outs of HIPAA, things work better when every member of the team understands compliance and why it’s so essential to your success as a team.
That means that HR staff, admin support, social media coordinators, everyone in the team has a solid understanding of HIPAA and how it affects your operations. Educating and training your team about HIPAA is imperative. It’s simple but true: when everyone on your team understands why you are working towards something and why it is so important, the team will self monitor and work together to achieve compliance excellence.
Be Ready to Adapt
The last lesson is one that I’m still learning: be able to adapt. Compliance isn’t set in stone, it’s something that is constantly evolving as our healthcare industry and its relationship with technology continue to change.
A great example is cloud storage. The idea of storing personal health information in the cloud was once outrageous to the healthcare industry. Advancements in tech and security have seen the launch of HIPAA compliant cloud storage systems, and blockchain is shifting how healthcare providers and the businesses that serve them can share and access information. These technologies have allowed us to be more efficient, while remaining compliant.
Compliance will continue to change with the move towards eHealth, personal health information on our mobile devices, and increasingly advance wearable tech. As technology continues to advance, the ways in which we protect health information and stay compliant have to change too. It’s exciting, definitely, but it also makes it so necessary to stay informed about what is happening in the industry and how rules around compliance are shifting.
Teach yourself, teach your team, and keep learning. Those are three of the lessons I’ve learned about staying compliant in the healthcare industry. If your company can commit to knowing the regulations and staying ahead of shifts and advancements, you will be on the path to success in this space!