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HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act) Essay

The HIPAA is divided into two sections. Section one seeks to protect the right to continued health insurance cover for employees and their family members in the event of losing their job or shifting to another job (U. S. Department of Labor, 2010). This section also dictates limitations to group health plan benefits, which can be provided to preexisting condition to between 12 and 18 months after enrollment into the plan.

However, the act does not impose such restrictions to long term plans provided separately from general health plan. This enables employees and their families to have insurance cover even after losing employment. The other crucial provision of the HIPAA is on patient information privacy (National Institute of Health, 2007). In a move to simplify and improve the efficiency of the use and transfer of health information, the act dictates for the development of rules setting standards for such operations within the health care system.

The section also defines various programs for mitigating fraud activities or abuse of power in the system. On privacy, the act gives provisions for the use of disclosure of protected health care information of a patient (National Institute of Health, 2007). This is quite crucial in protecting the right to privacy and confidentiality by a patient. HIPAA also sets new transaction and code sets rule, which defines the standards for health care institutions to file their electronic claims for compensation.

In addition, the act has established a security rule, which dictates new safeguard in dealing with electronic protected health information (U. S. Department of Health & Human services, 2003). To ensure effectiveness as well as flexibility of the security rule, it defines both required and addressable specifications for implementing the rule; with the latter being more flexible. Therefore, the HIPAA protects employee health insurance cover after loss of change of job and safeguards protected health information use and disclosure.

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