As defined by the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), a Business Associate can be any organization or person working in association with or providing services to a Covered Entity who handles or discloses Protected Health Information (PHI) or Personal Health Records (PHR). With certain exceptions, a person or entity that creates, receives, maintains, or transmits PHI for a function or activity regulated by the HIPAA Privacy Rule for a Covered Entity is a Business Associate.
The HITECH Act, a recent update made to overall HIPAA regulations, requires Business Associates to comply with HIPAA mandates regarding the handling and use of health information. As a Business Associate, you must comply with a wide-range of regulatory obligations, including certain privacy obligations, security standards, and breach notification requirements.
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