OCR ISSUES HIGHEST HIPAA PENALTY IN ENFORCEMENT HISTORY
The Office of Civil Rights (“OCR”) has imposed a $16 million penalty against Anthem, Inc. to settle potential violations of HIPAA. This is the highest settlement amount imposed by OCR. Over the span of about 2 months in 2014-2015, cyber-attackers gained access to Anthem’s IT system via an undetected targeted cyber-attack designed to extract data from the system. The cyber-attack was initiated by way of spear phishing e-mails responded to by employees. On March 13, 2015, Anthem filed a breach report with OCR. OCR’s investigation revealed that the cyber-attackers stole the ePHI of almost 79 million individuals, including names, social security numbers, medical identification numbers, addresses, dates of birth, email addresses, and employment information. OCR’s investigation revealed that Anthem failed to conduct an enterprise-wide risk analysis, had insufficient procedures to regularly review information system activity, failed to identify and respond to suspected or known security incidents, and failed to implement adequate minimum access controls to prevent the cyber-attackers from accessing sensitive ePHI. Additional information is available here.
ALABAMA MEDICAID APPROVES INTEGRATED CARE NETWORK
Alabama Medicaid recently approved an integrated care network (“ICN”) to complement the long-term care services rendered to Medicaid beneficiaries. The program will not change the Medicare benefits available, but will help beneficiaries learn about and apply for services available to them, such as medication management, support for independent living, or managing or preventing illness. Alabama Select Network will oversee the program through a contract with Alabama Medicaid. Additional information is available here.
ALABAMA BOARD OF MEDICAL EXAMINERS NEWSLETTER
The Alabama Board of Medical Examiners recently issued its latest newsletter. Topics addressed include license renewals, benzodiazepine use and misuse, changes to office-based surgery registration, 2019 ICD-10 code changes, and the regulation of stem cell and regenerative therapies. A copy of the newsletter is available here.
Download the full article, “Health Care : Helpful Hints – November 2018” written by Kelli C. Fleming.