OnRamp Explains the Legal Landscape Surrounding New HIPAA Compliance Omnibus Rule

March 23, 2013 (PRLEAP.COM) Health News
OnRamp, a data center operations company headquartered in Austin, TX, announces that company founder Chad Kissinger will be the featured speaker on HIPAA compliance at the Austin HIMSS Chapter Luncheon on Tuesday, April 9, 2013. Kissinger will speak about the recent changes to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) provided in the Health and Human Services (HHS) Final Omnibus Rule, in a presentation entitled, "After the Omnibus Rule Who Can Touch Your [Electronic Protected Health Information] (e-PHI): Using a 3rd Party Vendor to Outsource Your e-PHI." Kissinger's discussion will chronicle the legal structure established for protecting the privacy of critical healthcare data preceding the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH), to the present standards defined by the Final Omnibus Rule.

OnRamp is addressing the recent surge in HIPAA compliance violations with hosting solutions that meet the privacy and security standards defined by the HIPAA and HITECH laws. OnRamp's HIPAA compliance hosting solutions are rooted in the data center operations company's highly secure managed hosting, cloud computing and colocation services. OnRamp uses a 3-Step HIPAA Risk Assessment to diagnose, assess and manage any threats, vulnerabilities and risks to the IT structure of covered entities.

Kissinger has been a driving force in developing OnRamp's offering and serves as the company's lead advisor on HIPAA compliance. "With the recent enactment of the New Final Omnibus Rule, HHS has clarified the responsibilities of covered entities, business associates and their agents, with specific emphasis on the role of IT vendors," stated Kissinger. "The conduit exception is no longer sufficient for relieving the responsibility of business associates who have persistent access to PHI, and establishes direct liability with or without a Business Associate Agreement (BAA). Pressure is also added to covered entities that are now liable for the penalties or mistakes of their business associates and agents." The Final Omnibus Rule which will go into effect on March 26th, 2013, has garnered attention throughout the healthcare industry for the impact it is expected to have on businesses that are unable to come into HIPAA compliance.

While the focus of Kissinger's presentation will center on the role data storage companies play in HIPAA compliance by protecting e-PHI, the same principles are applicable to all businesses that are deemed business associates, or agents thereof, by law. The presentation will emphasize the importance for covered entities to seek out relationships with 3rd party vendors, and particularly IT vendors, who both understand the HIPAA compliance law, as outlined by HIPAA and HITECH, and are making a conscientious effort to achieve compliance under these laws. OnRamp then works with the covered entities and business associates that come in contact with patient data to design and implement systems and applications to build a fully compliant solution that addresses the confidentiality, the availability and the integrity of electronic protected health information (e-PHI).

About OnRamp
OnRamp was founded in 1994 in Austin, TX. As one of Texas' first Internet Operations companies, OnRamp's history is rooted in providing reliable and secure connectivity that enables distributed computing. Today, OnRamp is a data center operations company that delivers a full suite of colocation, cloud computing, high security hosting and disaster recovery services backed by Full7Layer Support, to help customers build, deploy and manage data center operations at each and every layer.