With the advancement of technology, having your private information stolen gets easier day by day. Personal data such as health information is vulnerable to getting hacked. Once stolen, your personal information can be used for fraud. One such personal data is your private health information. This is why in 1996, then US President Bill Clinton signed into law the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or simply known as the HIPAA. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA is a legislation that provides privacy and security provisions for the protection of private medical records. Under HIPAA, second or third parties will no longer be able to access your private health information without your written consent. Without your written consent, your private health information is safe from being shared with other entities.

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA aims to simplify the existing healthcare system. But its main objective is to shield an individual’s private health information and safeguard it from fraud and abuse. With the HIPAA’s security measures, those trying to illegally hacked into your private health information will find themselves entangled in a web of problems such as the possibility of jail time. HIPAA also allows an individual to take control of their own personal medical history and other information and health-related data. Under the HIPAA, you now have the right to access your private health information and make the necessary corrections or changes and explicitly state on how or who can access your private health information. This provision of the HIPAA prevents the illegal sharing of your personal data. You now hold the sole power of choosing the audience for your personal health data.

Aside from your protection from fraud, the HIPAA can now prevent employers from accessing your private health information to make employment decisions. Employers are no longer allowed, unless given permission by you, to access your health data. This will prevent discrimination of individuals and prevent employers from not hiring you because of their limited healthcare insurance coverage. Furthermore, the HIPAA enables patients with existing medical conditions to change jobs without having to worry about their conditions not being covered under their new employer’s health plan. Aside from these, the HIPAA also created the standardization of electronic billing and other healthcare processes. The law mandates the healthcare industry to create a systemized process that can be applied to all transactions pertaining to healthcare.

Nowadays, the world wide web sees an increase in mobile users every day. While there is some advantage to it, there must also be limitations. Such as the case in your private health information. As a private data, these must be secured away from the prying eyes of those who want to use your information for fraud. The creation of HIPAA is geared towards the greater good and in the protection of an individual’s sovereignty over their personal information. HIPAA serves as your security protection against abusive healthcare providers and hackers. Because protecting your private health information is as important as protecting yourself from getting sick.

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