The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) was created by the US government to meet the need for the protection of the health and well being of all Americans. HHS was formerly called Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) until 1979 when an…
Among the acts that are implemented by the HHS include The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and The Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act (PSQIA )of 2005 (Frimpong & Rivers, 2009). This essay gives a critical analysis and discussion on the impact of HHS on the health care industry with a special focus on the implication of the aforementioned Acts on health care and patient safety. Illustrations of my own working experience are used to demonstrate how the regulatory framework acts to protect the needs of patients for care and privacy and security of confidential data and information.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is a federal legislation or law which gives patients a right to control all forms of Protected Health Information (PHI). In accordance to this Act, PHI represents Individually Identifiable Health Information (IIHI) which is acquired from the patient and stored within the health facility (Furrow, 2011). This also includes all information which related the condition of the patient whether in the past, current or future. This means that before a health care provider accesses, retrieves and uses health information on patients, the provisions of the Act must be given due consideration (Frimpong & Rivers, 2009). In this sense, it is argued that the HIPAA through the implementation of the HHS affects the manner in which hospitals and health care providers and record managers handle patient information. For example in a veteran’s affairs hospital where I work, it is mandatory that a patient signs for the release of information before it can be received or sent for specific purposes. This example demonstrates that the regulatory framework of the HHS defines the policies and procedures that health systems design for the management of information. Health systems and professionals are mandated to adhere to the provisions of the HIPPA. Therefore the right of patients to ...
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HHS was formerly called Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) until 1979 when an independent Department of Education was formed. HHS acts to implement various rules, regulations and Acts that are enacted to ensure that the health of all citizens is protected (Hoffman, 2007).
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