There is no dispute about the advancement of technology and its use in the medical field has brought about many benefits than we anticipated. However, along with these benefits, there are other challenges that have continued to emerge from time to time—one common and major challenge experienced in maintaining health-related information. For example, when a health organization hires a new employee or engages an organization, it must face the fact that this new hire will be exposed to some private and confidential information about the facility, the patients, and even the employees. Therefore, in order to prevent the employees from revealing sensitive information that could endanger the health facility and its operation, you should request the employees to sign the HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement.
A HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement is a contract signed between a health organization/facility and an employee or other organization with access to medical records to maintain privacy and confidentiality of personal health information. The HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement provides the employee with legal restrictions on the use and sharing of the sensitive personal health information with which they are accessed. As such, it is one of the methods an employee can use to validate their due diligence while attempting to adhere to the dictates of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) privacy rule. The HIPAA privacy rule, which was created by Congress back in 1996, has continued to significantly safeguard the confidentiality of medical records and other health information sent electronically. Usually, the HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement applies to various sectors of healthcare businesses such as health plans, healthcare clearinghouses, and healthcare service providers. The agreement also covers both institutional and non-institutional providers such as Medicare, Medicaid, military, and veterans’ health programs.
How to Write (What to Include)
If you are willing to write a HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement but don’t know how to go about it, the following steps will guide you through.
The introductory paragraph should be the first thing in your HIPAA Employee NDA form. Here, you need to fill in the name of the healthcare organization as well as the name of the employee who will be accessed to personal health information (PHI). Also, mention the date by which the form will take effect. Usually, this is the date that the last party signs the form.
Personal Health Information
After the introductory paragraph, you can go ahead and describe the limits of personal health information within the facility.
Here, you need to clearly explain what information is regarded as confidential. Make sure you use the language that is simple, direct, and understandable by both parties involved in the agreement. More importantly, ensure the employee understands that the information shouldn’t be disclosed to unauthorized persons unless with prior written consent.
Return of materials
This clause explains that the employer should return any confidential material under specified terms. This may be when the employee ceases to be part of the organization or when the contract expires.
The term describes the duration by which the contract will take. Note that the employee will be obligated to adhere to the conditions of the agreement as long as it is in effect.
Notice of immunity from liability
Here, the employee is notified that he or she might be held liable for double damages, including the attorney fees, among other charges.
This includes any other information that is relevant and is sometimes referred to as boilerplate. This information may include:
- Injunction relief
- Governing laws
Signing the agreement
The HIPAA Employee NDA should be signed by both the medical organization/facility and the employee. Note that the employee only enters the agreement upon appending their signature. Therefore, they should be given enough time to review the terms thoroughly so that they make an informed signature. Once the agreement is signed by both parties, it will possess some binding power making it enforceable in a court of law.
Sometimes, writing a HIPAA Employee NDA can be time consuming or tiresome. However, this shouldn’t worry you much as we provide an alternative way to get it done. Instead of going through the long process, you can simply download our free HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement template and get it filled. Our templates are well structured with a set of definitions and responsibilities that a new employee should be aware of and agree with.
Free Templates & Examples
Frequently Asked Questions
Some of the most common examples of HIPAA Violations include:
o Mishandling records
o Employee sharing information
o Data theft or breach
o Improper training protocols
o Improper data access
o Lack of authorization
Contrary to the common misconception, the HIPAA Employee NDA doesn’t apply to all the employees within the health sector. Rather, it should only be mandatory for the covered entities, including health plans, healthcare clearinghouse, and healthcare providers who transmit personal health information electronically.
Yes. You risk facing legal penalties should you violate HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement. Also, you can be held liable for any financial damages caused as a result of the breach.
Once you’ve signed the HIPAA Employee Non-Disclosure Agreement, as an employee, you need to take extra precautionary measures to avoid violations. As such, you can observe the following practices:
o Never share or disclose your log-ins to anyone.
o You shouldn’t text patient information to unauthorized persons.
o Don’t leave your devices unattended to
o Don’t access information due to curiosity.