Blogs / Events / Articles / News

HIPAA Compliance Is a Health Care Entity’s Secret Weapon in Preventing and Combating Ransomware Attacks

One of the fastest growing areas of cybercrime is ransomware. Ransomware is a type of malicious software that encrypts data and makes it inaccessible to authorized users. The hackers who orchestrate ransomware attacks demand that authorized users pay a ransom in order to obtain the key to decrypt their data. Payment is generally required to be pa...

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Breach of ePHI Results in $2.7 Million Fine

Oregon Health & Science University (“OHSU”) has paid $2.7 million to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) to settle allegations that it violated the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”). OHSU must also comply with a three-year corrective action plan. ...

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Ask the Health Law Gurus™: Can a Prison Forcibly Medicate an Inmate with a Psychotropic Drug against the Inmate’s Will?

Question: Can a Pennsylvania prison forcibly administer a psychotropic medication to an inmate against the inmate’s will? Answer: In Pennsylvania, a prison’s ability to forcibly medicate an inmate with a psychotropic drug depends upon the circumstances and whether the circumstances constitute an extreme emergency. However, in the majority ...

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Ask the Health Law Gurus™: What is a Non-Compete Clause in an Employment Contract? Is it Enforceable?

Question: I have heard about non-compete clauses being negotiated in employment agreements with physicians. What is a non-compete clause? What does it mean if my contract has a non-compete clause? Continue Reading

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False Claims Act Penalties Moving Full Steam Ahead

By August 1, 2016, all federal agencies must adjust their civil monetary penalties, including penalties required by the False Claims Act (“FCA”), to account for inflation. Last month, the Railroad Retirement Board, which occasionally has FCA cases, became the first agency to adjust its penalties. These adjustments are in response to Congres...

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Spring Showers Bring HIPAA Breaches

OCR has announced several recent settlement agreements to resolve violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”). These settlement amounts range from $25,000 to $3.9 million dollars and illustrate a range of mistakes that health care providers make with respect to their HIPAA compliance. This post briefly summ...

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SOS Answered: New Guidance on HIPAA for App Developers

Amidst criticism that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) lags behind technological innovation, the Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) released new guidance to aid app developers in determining how HIPAA may apply to the products they are building and developing. OCR explained that the guidance is intended to ...

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Dialing in on Health Care Delivery Through Telemedicine

With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, millions of newly insured patients have entered the health care market, bringing attention to the need for expanded access to services. Meanwhile, rapid advancements in the use of high-speed data transmission have paved the way toward using Internet technology to alleviate this problem, while ...

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Ask the Health Law Gurus™: What Is a Civil Monetary Penalty and How Is It Different from an OCR Settlement?

The Health Law Gurus™ are here to help you stay current on issues and breaking news in health law. To help you stay up-to-date, we are excited to announce our new segment, “Ask the Health Law Gurus™.” Each month, we will select a reader’s question and answer it here, on the Health Law Gurus™ blog. In response to our last blog post,...

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Historic Moment: Husband Reports Wife’s HIPAA Violation Triggering Six Figure Penalty Against Employer

  For the second time in history, the Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) has imposed a civil monetary penalty (“CMP”) against a covered entity for violations of the Health Insurance and Portability Act (“HIPAA”). Lincare, Inc., a provider of respiratory care, infusion therapy, and medical equipment to in-home patients, is required to pay...

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