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What is required to become HIPAA Compliant?

Do I need to take a test or do I just need to follow a certain set of guidelines?

EDIT: Just to provide my background. I am a small IT Firm and we would like to expand into the medical field and work with all the smaller medical places.

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HIPPA isn't a certification, it is a set of regulations for proper handling of personal health information. The requirements vary based on what your role is and what data you handle. I would recommend visiting the Health Information Privacy section of the Health & Human Services site for more info.

It also might not hurt to hire someone to evaluate your compliance if you are still confused about it as it is a legal requirement for handling certain types of health information.

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The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act better known as HIPAA, has been called to live by the government to protect patient's private information. HIPAA is aimed at healthcare professionals and staff who have access to patient information. HIPAA certification is a certification designed by private firms accompanied by training and testing. HIPAA certification is not yet officially approved by the government.

There are a set of tests you need to take to get this certificate from one of the private firms which issue HIPPA certificates. There are three levels:

  • Certified HIPAA Professional (how to behave as professional under the HIPPA regulations)
  • Certified HIPAA Security Specialist (how to make your organisation compliant)
  • Certified HIPAA Administrator (aimed at administrative personnel and nurses)

Each level has it's own training and set of goals you need to achieve.

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The edit to the OP's question means that this answer is no longer helpful. OP does not want to become personally certified, he wants his business to be HIPAA compliant. – schroeder Jul 4 '13 at 17:29

Have you tried a Google search or logging into

They even have a handy checklists.

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The checklist is nice. Thank you. – JadedCore Mar 7 '14 at 20:27
It is a HIPAA rule reference in the link, although for the record, the agency here is IHS, (American) Indian Health Services. – mg1075 Oct 9 '15 at 16:00
@mg1075 I'm not sure what you mean – schroeder Oct 9 '15 at 16:30
@schroeder - the checklists link points to the IHS website.; – mg1075 Oct 9 '15 at 17:57
@mg1075 that's true - I'm not sure what you're getting at, though – schroeder Oct 9 '15 at 19:12

There is a great deal to becoming HIPAA compliant if you are a small IT firm. We are currently helping several IT companies become compliant and make Medical their vertical. We even give them ideas and material for marketing.

It isn't something to take lightly, however. There is a lot involved in becoming compliant.

Here are a couple of relevant articles I have written on the subject. Feel free to review other articles on the blog directed specifically at small providers and small businesses that support them. Contact me there if you want more info.

What is HIPAA and Why Do We Need It

Omnibus Final Rule Quick Overview

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There is a great guide on "How to Become HIPAA Compliant" at

This Smart Guide gives a detailed account for how to achieve HIPAA compliance and is a free resource available to anyone.

Hope this helps!

Disclosure: I'm the founder of Accountable, a software company that focuses on making HIPAA compliance easy.

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Hi Kevin, welcome to Information Security! Can you include specific details in your answer? Link only answers are not productive here (linkrot, searchability, etc). – AviD May 1 '15 at 7:32

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