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parents can provide consent and requests for records (UCSF, 2015). Neonates and fetuses requireeither the mother’s consent, or both the mother and father’s consent. Individuals with cognitive disabilities are evaluated in order to decide whether or not they have the capability to give consent for themselves (UCSF, 2015. These individuals may require further review and may be deemed to have a proxy working in coordination with the patient (UCSF, 2015. Protecting these vulnerable populations is important because they are lacking being fully autonomous, or the cognitive ability to make the best decision for themselves.
8Policy Analysis and Testimony TranscriptAlthough HIPAA does a great deal of good for the patient population, there is still room for some improvements. A lot of the improvements that I find have to do with increasing HIPAA compliance by healthcare professionals. HIPAA provides a set of standards in order to protect patient privacy, however; there is a void of how to properly implement these standards in the workplace when it comes to reviewing and revising policies, assessing risk factors, and regular employee education. Policies and procedures in healthcare facilities are what guide employees to maintaining HIPAA compliance. Regularly revising and getting input on policies is crucial not only to best educate employees, but also be available for HHS if an investigation if a violation does occur (Barney, 2018). A regulation of a facilities policies should be implemented to ensure that up to date policies are available to employees. Facilities should also conduct a risk analysis. Such an analysis will help pinpoint where potential violations are at a highest risk to occur (Barney, 2018). This can help analyze the current software and systems in place, the information management team, and how different employees or departments function when it comes to protected health information. This risk analysis also helps organizations to get more familiar withtheir data systems, policies and procedures (Barney, 2018). Semi-annual risk assessments should be required by HIPAA in order to proactively reduce the risk of any violations.Once a risk assessment is conducted, follow up education can commence. If there is vulnerability and risk found in a particular department, or particular facility it is important to re-educate the staff. By doing this it can help reduce the risk for any violations from occurring and ensures patient privacy (Barney, 2018). If patients do not feel as if they are not being protected, they can bring upon legal action. There should be mandatory seminars required annually for all
9Policy Analysis and Testimony Transcripthealthcare employees on maintaining HIPAA guidelines and preventing careless violations. Eventhe small, unintentional violations can add up to be a financial burden on a facility.