FTC Strengthens Health Data Breach Notification Rule to Protect Consumers

Key Points to Note:

The Health Breach Notification Rule (HBNR) has undergone significant amendments that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has authorized to improve consumer protections in our increasingly digital age.

These changes expand the amount of information that healthcare providers are required to disclose after a data breach and provide much-needed clarification on how the rule relates to modern technology like health apps. read the complete news article to know about How FTC Strengthens Health Data Breach Notification Rule to Protect Consumers.

Key Updates to FTC Strengthens Health Data Breach Notification Rule to Protect Consumers

  • Focus on Digital Health Innovations: The updated rule makes sure that health apps and other comparable technologies that are not covered by HIPAA are held responsible for maintaining the security of sensitive health data in accordance with legal requirements by clearly outlining its application to them.
  • Expanded Definition of Breaches: The revised regulations greatly improve consumer protection and the privacy of their personal health information by including any unlawful access or disclosure of identifiable health information under the definition of breaches.
  • Clarity in Definitions and Scope: For better clarity, definitions of terms like “covered healthcare provider,” “PHR identifiable health information,” and “healthcare services or supplies” have been revised. Moreover, only organizations that access or send unsecured health data to a personal health record are included in the expanded definition of “PHR related entity”.
  • Enhanced Consumer Notifications: The final rule requires covered companies to notify consumers of breaches in a more thorough manner, including identifying any third parties that may have obtained unsecured health data as a result of the breach. This gives customers important knowledge regarding the safety of their health information.
  • Electronic Notification Advancements: With the new regulations, it is now possible to notify affected parties of breaches clearly and efficiently by email and other electronic methods, allowing for prompt communication.
  • Revised Timelines for Notification: The FTC’s notification timeline for breaches affecting 500 or more people has been modified. As of right now, covered companies have sixty calendar days from the date of breach discovery to notify the FTC in tandem with notifying impacted parties.
  • Enhanced Readability and Compliance: The updated rule’s more straightforward wording facilitates easier understanding and compliance from stakeholders, allowing for more seamless compliance with regulatory requirements.

Effective Date and Additional Actions

Sixty days following their Federal Register publication, these modifications will become operative. With recent enforcement proceedings against companies like GoodRx and Easy Healthcare (Premom app) for breaching the HBNR, the FTC is demonstrating its continued vigilance in safeguarding consumer data protection. Commissioners Holyoak and Ferguson voiced their disagreements, notwithstanding the Commission’s 3-2 vote to accept the final rule.

To inform customers about their rights and how to report fraud and unethical business activities, the FTC provides materials, read more about FTC Strengthens Health Data Breach Notification Rule to Protect Consumers at https://hitconsultant.net/.

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