The 8 Best HIPAA Compliance Certification & Training Resources

4 min read
Jul 29, 2022 1:51:47 PM

If your organization offers (or is currently developing) a product that gathers, accesses, or stores protected health information (PHI), your product needs to be HIPAA-compliant. HIPAA is a federal legal framework that provides a set of national standards that shields patient data from exposure and includes a series of requirements for organizations to manage PHI legally. Noncompliance can result in fines and even jail time, based on severity and negligence.

If you’re new to HIPAA, it’s worth investing in HIPAA compliance certification, which can help your team develop the internal processes necessary to safeguard sensitive patient data. Read on to learn more about how HIPAA compliance certification works, the certification benefits, and resources for training, consulting, and managing your data.

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What Is HIPAA Compliance Certification?
Benefits of HIPAA Compliance Certification
    Get Up to Speed and Enact Holistic Processes
    Build Client Confidence
    Reduce Liability
HIPAA Compliance Certification Resources
    Training
    Consulting
    Tools
Keep Track of Your Compliance Levels With DataGuard

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Ensure your data and network are HIPAA compliant with HIPAA Cloud Storage Requirements: The Essential Guide.

What Is HIPAA Compliance Certification?

HIPAA compliance certification is the process by which organizations can receive training on building internal frameworks that safeguard patient health information (PHI) according to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

It’s important to note that there is no official HIPAA compliance certification process or requirement. However, the HIPAA Security Rule requires “periodic technical and nontechnical evaluation” to maintain compliance. Further, the HIPAA Privacy Rule requires organizations to provide regular training on privacy policies and procedures, with employees revisiting that training at regular intervals. The specific timeframe for training and evaluation is purposefully left to the organization's discretion, though many interpret “periodic” as anywhere between six months to a year.

Any certification received will be provided by a third-party vendor. While certification does not guarantee protection from a failed audit, it can provide evidence of due diligence, aid an organization in the implementation of best practices, and provide the necessary training for your workforce. Successful completion will give teams the tools they need to maintain ongoing compliance.

Benefits of HIPAA Compliance Certification

While there is no official certification process, there are still benefits to becoming HIPAA compliant certified.

Get Up to Speed and Enact Holistic Processes

HIPAA is a complex subject requiring technical solutions for effective PHI protection and nontechnical training for employees that regularly come in contact with secure patient information. If your organization doesn’t already have a team that knows how to implement effective HIPAA guidelines, there’s a good chance you’re starting from square one. Completing certification will give your team the necessary information to develop holistic, organization-wide processes that maximize data security.

Build Client Confidence

It’s one thing to say your organization is secure — having a certificate to back that up proves completion of industry-standard security implementation processes. Displaying a badge on your organization’s website shows current and prospective clients you’re taking security seriously, giving them the peace of mind to know their data is in good hands. Proof of HIPAA compliance can also be a valuable differentiator in an increasingly crowded market.

Reduce Liability

Completion of a certification program will not protect your organization from an audit. Still, it will help you implement security best practices as well as remediation processes and give your team the tools it needs to react in case of a data breach. With effective mitigation strategies and codifying internal processes, your organization can prevent breaches before they happen and reduce the financial and reputational toll in case they do.

HIPAA Compliance Certification Resources

Training

If your organization is building HIPAA compliance from scratch, the following resources will help you build and test your product, as well as keep employees informed about important HIPAA guidelines.

HealthIT.gov is the official government resource for public and private IT departments to maintain data security. In addition to hosting a third-party certification process, HealthIT.gov also provides a wealth of training resources and security tools to analyze risk and educate your workforce.

Aptible knows tech startups (as well as small businesses) may be entering HIPAA compliance without any prior experience, so they’ve compiled a guide full of important information to help you get your organization moving in the right direction.

HIPAATraining.com has been in the training and compliance business for over 20 years and has worked with clients like Goodwill, Zappos.com, Redhat, Ancestry, and more. They specialize in providing individuals and small to mid-sized businesses with the necessary training resources to secure and manage PHI effectively.

Consulting

If you already have a product in the works and would like to assess compliance progress, the following vendors offer consulting services that will determine any HIPAA policy or procedure gaps and make recommendations for resolving them.

ScienceSoft provides consulting services for healthcare providers, software developers, telemedicine vendors, internet of medical things companies, and more. ScienceSoft will perform PHI risk analysis, review HIPAA policies and implementation, and detect IT security gaps.

RubyGarage offers a holistic security review of your product by assessing internal network processes as well as internal and external vulnerabilities to ensure PHI stays protected. Plus, RubyGarage will aid in the development of a security and vulnerability management plan that ensures your organization stays compliant for years to come.

Tools

Maintaining compliance is an ongoing process. The following tools will help monitor your data, make security recommendations, and aid development.

Symmetry Systems DataGuard performs agentless scans of your data across AWS, Azure, GCP, and on-prem cloud environments to provide real-time, comprehensive snapshots of where your most sensitive data resides and who has access. DataGuard then recommends ways for your security teams to close gaps and strengthen your security posture to ensure HIPAA compliance across your hybrid cloud environments.

SecureFrame makes training part of the product, with a team of compliance experts that help design HIPAA policies and train your workforce. SecureFrame then provides a platform to evaluate your safeguards, track vendors, and monitor compliance.

Medstack rapidly creates HIPAA-compliant development environments with minimal code, allowing developers to iterate and deploy within existing CI/CD pipelines, ensuring streamlined compliance is a part of the development process.

Keep Track of Your Compliance Levels With DataGuard

There is no one-and-done solution for HIPAA compliance —  it needs to become an ongoing part of your development process. That’s why Symmetry Systems DataGuard provides a modern approach to data security posture management, with continuous analysis of enterprise data across hybrid cloud environments.

DataGuard allows you to get detailed snapshots of where your data is and who has access in under an hour, identify risks, set up alerts for potential firewall violations and data breaches, and protect the most sensitive data on your network. Learn more about how DataGuard’s rapid access to insight and analysis can ensure your product stays HIPAA compliant, and contact us for a demo today.

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