Is eComfax HIPAA Compliant?
Can HIPAA-covered entities use eComFax to create, SEND or RECEIVE FAXES containing identifiable protected health information (PHI) or would using eComFax violate HIPAA Rules? In this post we assess whether eComFax supports HIPAA compliance.
Under HIPAA Rules, healthcare organizations are required to implement safeguards to ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of PHI (Protected health information). While it is straightforward to implement controls internally to keep data secure, oftentimes third parties are contracted to provide services that require access to PHI. They too must abide by HIPAA Rules covering privacy, security, and breach notifications.
A third-party that requires access to PHI – or copies of health data – to perform services on behalf of a covered entity is considered a business associate. A covered entity and business associate must enter into a contract – a business associate agreement – in which the business associate agrees to comply with certain aspects of the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Breach Notification Rules. Without a business associate agreement in place, any sharing of PHI would be considered a HIPAA violation.
While CWS does not look at the information uploaded to eComFax, since CWS can potentially access the information, and data is stored on its servers, a business associate agreement would be required.
Will CWS Sign a BAA (Business Associate Agreement) with HIPAA Covered Entities for eComFax?
CWS is committed to protecting the privacy of its customers’ data and ensuring all of its services are secure and data can always be accessed. CWS is aware of the requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and the firm is prepared to enter into a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with HIPAA covered entities for certain services.
CWS offers a BAA for eComFax.
CWS explains in its terms and conditions that any HIPAA covered entity or business associate of a HIPAA covered entity that wishes to use eComFax in connection with any PHI must enter into a BAA with CWS before any of its services are used in connection with PHI.
Is eComFax HIPAA Compliant?
Since CWS offers a BAA, is eComFax HIPAA compliant? CWS can be considered a HIPAA compliant service provider as CWS supports HIPAA compliance for eComFax and will enter into a BAA with healthcare customers.
Once a BAA has been obtained, it is the responsibility of the covered entity or business associate to ensure that eComFax is used correctly in a manner that does not violate HIPAA Rules.