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$1.5million for all violations of an identical provision and staff involved is subject to face criminal chargesand fines. 2. HIPAA Law 10-109 Sections 261-264 45 CFR 164.530 (b), HITECH Act Section 13410(d) 1176(a)3. Real life case example: Following an investigation by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the University of California at Los Angeles Health System (UCLAHS) has agreed to settle potential violations of the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules for $865,500 and has committed to a corrective action plan aimed at remedying gaps in its compliance with the rules.The resolution agreement resolves two separate complaints filed with OCR on behalf of two celebrity patients who received care at UCLAHS. The complaints alleged that UCLAHS employees repeatedly and without permissible reason looked at the electronic protected health information of these patients.OCR’s investigation into the complaints revealed that from 2005-2008, unauthorized employees repeatedly looked at the electronic protected health information of numerous other UCLAHS patients. Through policies and procedures, entities covered under HIPAA must reasonably restrict access to patient information to only those employees with a valid reason to view the information and must sanction any employee who is found to have violated these policies (hhs.gov).4 | P a g e
HIPAA and the Nurses’ Role and ResponsibilityConclusionThe nursing staff is at the forefront of handling, managing, and disclosing private health information, by communication with patients and their family members, with other medical providers, and because of your own documentation requirements. Nurses have to continue to be mindful of the HIPAA law and penalties that are associated with it if violated. The expectation for the nurse manager is that the staff nurses remain committed to protecting patients privacy and that we will not engage in, nor will we tolerate in others, anything less than full compliance.5 | P a g e
HIPAA and the Nurses’ Role and ResponsibilityReferences:Erickson, J. and Millar, S. (2005). Caring for patients while respecting their privacy: renewing our commitment. Medscape Online Journal of Issues in Nursing. 10 (2) Erickson, J., Millar, S. (May 31, 2005). "Caring for Patients While Respecting Their Privacy: Renewing Our Commitment". OJIN: The Online Journal of Issues in Nursing. Vol. 10 No. 2, Manuscript 1U.S. Department of Health & Human Service-HIPAAHealth Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 retrieved from6 | P a g e