January 8, 2021
HIPAA Guidelines for Shredding Services
Perhaps the most crucial documents containing personal, yet vital, information would be those used by hospitals and medical facilities. These items can contain a wide range of data, primarily in regards to any patient who has used these establishments. While this information is necessary to have, in order for medical professionals to properly care for their patients, it is also sensitive and should be protected.
How these records are stored will determine what steps are taken to ensure that all information remains secure and not at risk. As we enter a digital age, many hospitals have begun to move away from paper files, turning instead to secure, online cloud resources. However, there are still plenty of paper documents and records that must be looked after. When these files become outdated or are no longer needed, how will they be disposed of?
HIPAA, Paper Shredding, and Your Facility
In order to maintain the privacy of patients, the United States enacted the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) in 1996. Under this law, all medical information that contains sensitive or confidential data must be properly destroyed before it can be disposed of. HIPAA ensures that no fraud or information abuse will occur in the healthcare industry, so long as hospitals and other medical facilities stay compliant.
PROSHRED® Southern New Jersey can help all establishments in the medical industry follow HIPAA laws with our secure mobile shredding services. With PROSHRED®, you can enjoy the convenience of paper shredding right outside your door, thanks to our mobile shred trucks. Our certified shredding technicians undergo background checks before joining our team, and carry out all shred jobs with the utmost respect and confidentiality.
Items Protected Under HIPAA
There are certain items protected under HIPAA laws when it comes to hospital records. These documents include: notes, forms, patient histories, logs, billing and insurance information, and any records that contain personal information. HIPAA states that these items must “maintain reasonable and appropriate, technical, and physical safeguards to prevent intentional or unintentional use or disclosure of protected health information.”
Protected Health Information (PHI)
Protected health information, or PHI, includes patient information that cannot be disclosed to unauthorized individuals or improperly disposed of. PHI includes:
- Birth Date
- Social Security Number
- Patient Medical Condition
- How The Medical Care Was Paid For
- What Kind of Medical Care Was Received
All healthcare providers are required to have documented policies in place that outline what measures will be taken to keep PHI safe and secure. Hospitals, medical centers, doctors, dentists, psychiatrists, psychologists, and even insurance and collection agencies must abide by HIPAA laws.
Southern New Jersey Medical Record Shredding
With HIPAA in place, any medical professional who throws away an item considered to be PHI can face major consequences, along with the facility that they work for. In order to avoid hefty fines or a lost career, all professionals in the medical industry must be mindful of how PHI items are disposed of. If any information is compromised due to poor policies, the entire facility can be affected and fines levied.
In order to help facilities stay on top of the regular disposal of medical records, PROSHRED® Southern New Jersey provides secure medical record shredding services. With these services, medical facilities and other establishments required to abide by HIPAA laws can eliminate unnecessary labor costs while also ensuring that the privacy of their patients remains protected. Our mobile shred trucks are equipped to handle shred jobs of any size, so whether you need to purge a considerable load of patient records, or are interested in on-going shredding, we have the solutions you need.
Comply with HIPAA by using PROSHRED®
At PROSHRED® Southern New Jersey, we work with a variety of industries on a regular basis. We know better than most just how stressful compliance can be, and we want to eliminate headaches when we can. Our medical record shredding services are carried out by certified individuals who are specifically trained to maintain the privacy of the information contained in your documents. All of the items in our shred jobs are heavily monitored, so there is no risk of a security breach. As proof of your HIPAA compliance, PROSHRED® will give you a Certificate of Destruction at the end of your shred job upon request.
PROSHRED® Southern New Jersey is here for all of your medical record shredding needs. If you want to stay on top of your document disposal with on-going shredding, we have secure shred bins that can be easily integrated into your facility. Contact us today to learn more: 856-336-2820.