HHS Announces 11 HIPAA Enforcement Actions

Last Friday, the Department of Human and Health Services (HHS) announced in a press release that the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) resolved eleven investigations in the HIPAA Right of Access Initiative.  The press release states that the purpose of this initiative is to assist individual’s rights to timely access to their health records at a fair price.

OCR Director Lisa J. Pino said, “It should not take a federal investigation before a HIPAA covered entity provides patients, or their personal representatives, with access to their medical records. Health care organizations should take note that there are now 38 enforcement actions in our Right of Access Initiative and understand that OCR is serious about upholding the law and peoples’ fundamental right to timely access to their medical records.”

The release explained that HIPAA provides people the right of access to their health information from healthcare providers and plans; however, the HIPAA-regulated entity has 30 days to provide an individual with their records after receiving a request for documentation.