Q: What is HIPAA?
A: HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. It was passed by the U.S. Congress in 1996. Although it has many components, the portions which we are most concerned are the Administrative Simplifications. There are four standards in the Administrative Simplifications; Electronic Transactions & Code Sets, Privacy, Unique Identifiers and Security. UAB must train some members of our workforce on the Privacy and Security standards of HIPAA. The Privacy Regulations went into effect in April 2003 and the Security Regulations went into effect in April 2005.
Q: What are the HIPAA training requirements at UAB/UABHS?
A: All faculty, staff and students in a covered entity must complete HIPAA training when they are hired or enrolled at UAB. New employees who attend New Employee Orientation after April 20, 2005 receive HIPAA training at orientation. Those who do not attend orientation or who complete online orientation must take HIPAA training online in WebCT Vista when they begin a formal degree program in SHRP. Students should complete training by the end of the semester in which they enroll in a formal degree program. The website address is www.uab.edu/trainingcourses . Pre-shrp students do not need to complete HIPAA training until they are formally admitted to a program.
Q: Why does the SHRP faculty need to know about HIPAA?
A: UAB is an academic health center and SHRP is one of the five schools in the AHC. All employees and students in the HIPAA “covered entities” must follow UAB/ UAB Health System policies, procedures and standards related to privacy and security of protected health information. You may be impacted by HIPAA in clinical, research and educational activities at UAB. The School of Health Related Professions is a covered entity at UAB. Please view the HIPAA website for a complete list of “covered entities” at UAB/ UABHS. To access the UAB HIPAA website, you must have a valid BlazerID.
Q: How often is HIPAA training required at UAB?
A: Currently we offer one course at UAB entitled “HIPAA Privacy and Security Training.” This is the only currently required HIPAA training course, although many employees and students completed two HIPAA training courses in the past few years (Privacy and Security). This occurred because the regulations went into effect in two different years (2003 and 2005). Additional HIPAA training will be required in the future at a yet to be determined frequency.
Q: Do I get a certificate once I complete HIPAA training?
A: No, once you complete training, your grade in WebCT is sent to a centralized database. New employees are entered manually into the database after orientation. Faculty, staff and students can verify their training using Bedroc. This can be accessed at https://padlock.dpo.uab.edu/cgi-bin/bedroc or by following the prompts on the UAB HIPAA website.
Q: Who is responsible for ensuring that SHRP students have completed HIPAA training?
A: Program Directors and Department Chairs should keep a record of student’s HIPAA training. This can be accomplished by requiring students to print verification from the HIPAA website (www.hipaa.uab.edu) under “HIPAA training and verification” and using the Bedroc verification option. Faculty members can also request a report from the HIPAA Coordinator’s office..
Q: How does HIPAA impact my instructional and teaching activities?
A: UAB/ UABHS policies and standards address how we use and protect patient health information (PHI). To ensure the privacy and confidentiality of patients’ protected health information, please do not use patients’ names, medical record numbers or any other of the 18 identifying elements in classroom instruction or presentations. Patients should be de-identified in case examples. The list of protected PHI 18 data elements are provided on the HIPAA website.
Q: Where can I go for more information about HIPAA at UAB?
A: UAB and the UAB Health System have one HIPAA website now. The address is www.hipaa.uab.edu . The site is updated regularly and is your key to the latest information. The website is only available on campus because specific UAB policies are provided with sensitive information that we do not want outside persons to view. Links to national HIPAA resources are provided on the UAB HIPAA site.
Q: What is the website address for students, faculty and staff to use to access HIPAA training?
A: The website address for the WebCT Vista Training Institute is www.uab.edu/trainingcourses . WebCT Vista has two parts; the Academic Institute and the Training Institute. Academic courses and training courses are in separate listings.