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Empowering Your MSP Business to Grow and Prosper—One Post at a Time

5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreement (SLA)

Featured Post

5 Ways to Improve Your MSP Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

SLAs are the foundation of your MSP business. They are essential to building strong client relationships and must be clear, reasonable and well-constructed.

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How to Become an Expert on HIPAA Compliance

Posted by Britany DiCicco on November 2, 2017

How to Become an Expert on HIPAA Compliance

All the sensitive data that’s created and stored today—especially within the healthcare industry—has caused an increased demand for special attention, meaning that it’s more important than ever for managed service providers (MSPs) to fully understand HIPAA compliance. Not only does this mean knowing what it is, but what you need to do to be HIPAA compliant and what the consequences entail if you try to serve clients in the healthcare field without being compliant.

As mentioned in my previous blog, privately owned medical practices are becoming a principal target of cyber-attacks; therefore, the medical industry needs to be well prepared to prevent such threats from penetrating their network. As doctors are not usually security experts, they rely heavily on their MSPs to make sure they have the proper tools in place to maintain HIPAA compliance and protect them from cybercrime. Here are some key strategies that will help you become an expert on HIPAA compliance and uphold your promises to healthcare clients.

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Topics: HIPAA, Healthcare IT, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Examining HITECH, Its Impact on HIPAA Regulations and the Consequences of Non-Compliance

Posted by Britany DiCicco on October 17, 2017

Examining HITECH, Its Impact on HIPAA Regulations and the Consequences of Non-Compliance

The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act was signed into effect in 2009, and upon its mandate, $19.2 billion was allocated toward increasing the use of Electronic Health Records (EHR) by physicians and hospitals. However, this increase in healthcare data being managed electronically ultimately made the medical community vulnerable to data breaches as their patient’s personal information became high risk. Because of this, the HITECH Act had a significant effect on the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), where regulations needed to become more stringent in order to combat the enhanced risk of cyber threats.

HITECH changed the game drastically by expanding the compliance requirements of HIPAA. In fact, the original HIPAA requirements pale in comparison. What’s more, it forced healthcare organizations to make compliance a top priority. If you’re an IT provider servicing the healthcare industry, here are the most significant changes you need to be aware of.

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Topics: HIPAA, Healthcare IT, Cybersecurity and Threat Management

Understanding HIPAA and Healthcare IT: Part 1

Posted by Britany DiCicco on September 15, 2017

Understanding HIPAA and Healthcare IT: Part 1

Before the beginning of 2017, Experian predicted that the healthcare sector would be the most targeted sector for cyber criminals to exploit. In May of this year, that prediction came to life when the malware known as WannaCry caused 37 of the health trusts in the UK’s National Health Service to shut down, eventually spreading across 150 countries. Unfortunately, this is just one of many cyber attacks that healthcare organizations have recently faced. Today, these organizations are seeking aid with HIPAA compliance and increased security, causing them to look to managed services providers (MSPs) for help.

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Topics: Information Security, HIPAA, Healthcare IT

What Should MSPs Know About the HIPAA Security Rule?

Posted by Britany DiCicco on August 15, 2017

What Should MSPs Know About the HIPAA Security Rule?

Today, managed services providers (MSPs) who service clients in the healthcare industry have to worry about compliance—it’s simply part of the job. These MSPs offer their services to small- and medium-sized medical practices who rely on them to keep their security architecture safe and compliant with HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). Bearing the burden of this responsibility means that MSPs must have encyclopedic knowledge about HIPAA, and also have the proper security tools in place to meet the stringent requirements that are associated with HIPAA compliance.

As the healthcare industry continues to move away from paper processes and adopt new technologies, they are becoming increasingly prone to cyber attacks. It’s now more important than ever for MSPs to fully understand the HIPAA Security Rule and enable the medical practices they serve to remain compliant.

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Topics: Information Security, HIPAA, Healthcare IT

Why Small Medical Practices Struggle with HIPAA Compliance [CHART]

Posted by Lily Teplow on October 21, 2016

Why Small Medical Practices Struggle with HIPAA Compliance.jpgDo you serve clients in the healthcare industry? As their MSP, you’re well aware that these organizations have a responsibility to their customers and patients to maintain the security of their data – which means that they must be HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliant. HIPAA has completely changed the way electronic medical and health records are created, received, modified, transmitted or stored, yet many practices still struggle to become and remain HIPAA compliant. Not only do they face exorbitant fines for violating HIPAA law, healthcare companies also can’t afford to lose clients’ trust in their ability to safeguard patient information. So how can your managed IT services help them do just that?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Healthcare IT, MSP Sales Chart

HIPAA 2016 - New Audits Under Way

Posted by Mary Crogan on July 21, 2016

According to HealthcareInfoSecurity.com, the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights (OCR), which is responsible for HIPAA enforcement, has launched phase two of their HIPAA Audit Program in an effort to review the policies and procedures adopted by covered entities and their business associates.

If the OCR auditors come knocking, will you and/or your clients be ready?

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Topics: Industry News, HIPAA, Healthcare IT

Data Casualties in Healthcare Cyber Attacks [CHART]

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 15, 2016

Do you have any upcoming, in-person meetings with prospects in the healthcare vertical that you're hoping to close into clients? If so, you're probably working out your plan of attack. Distributing printed collateral is smart, but I recommend you also develop a formal, company-branded presentation that draws your audience in. In developing the content for your deck, keep it as customer-centric as possible. What's going to resonate with the audience you pitch to? What do they need to know in order to understand the value of your managed IT services?

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Topics: Sales and Marketing, Data Protection, Information Security, Healthcare IT, MSP Sales Chart

HIPAA Business Associate Violation Results in $650K Fine

Posted by Mary McCoy on July 7, 2016

The HIPAA Security Rule is in full effect! The first Business Associate HIPAA penalty made news Tuesday, following a data breach incident two years prior. Who's atoning for this cardinal data sin? The Catholic Health Care Services (CHCS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, a nonprofit organization now forced to pay a $650,000 fine. As a business associate legally obligated to adhere to federal regulation, CHCS is being held financially responsible for the breach of six nursing facilities, compromising 412 patients' Protected Health Information (PHI).

While many MSPs are compelled and encouraged to meet the demand for HIPAA compliance by serving the lucrative healthcare vertical, let this ruling serve as a wake-up call that there are costly consequences when MSPs themselves aren't compliant. What led to this unprecedented turn of events, and how can you prevent your MSP practice from suffering the same fate? Here's the Who, What, When, Where, Why and How, our data breach MSP debrief!

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Topics: Industry News, Information Security, Backup and Disaster Recovery, Healthcare IT, Data Loss

Ransomware Meets Healthcare: How We Protect Patient Data

Posted by Jaq Baldwin on July 6, 2016

This month a hacker with the handle "Dark Overlord" has been making news after successfully stealing thousands of healthcare records and holding them for ransom. According to Boing Boing, Dark Overlord was able to acquire 48,000 records from a healthcare organization in Farmington, Missouri; hundreds of thousands from Atlanta, Georgia and the Central/Midwest US as well as nine million patient insurance details. As if that weren't enough, on Tuesday the notorious hacker also stole the information of 34,000 New York healthcare patients. And just what kind of payout is up for grabs for greedy ransomware authors looking to exploit healthcare institutions? Dark Overlord is demanding 750 Bitcoin (or $513,682.50)! So what does this mean for MSPs?

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Topics: Data Protection, HIPAA, Healthcare IT, Continuity247

Top 3 Questions MSPs Have About HIPAA Compliance

Posted by Hunter Smith on June 1, 2016

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliance is a complex, but critical issue for many businesses. For many of these businesses who outsource their IT management needs, the onus for ensuring HIPAA compliance falls on these managed services providers (MSPs), like yourself. Your clients in the healthcare industry will likely pepper you with lots of questions and concerns around staying HIPAA compliant and avoiding the costly consequences of a HIPAA violation.

Here are the three most commonly asked questions about HIPAA compliance for MSPs. 

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Topics: Data Protection, Information Security, HIPAA, Healthcare IT

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