05-16-12 | Blog Post
Our HIPAA hosting and HIPAA compliant data center white paper provides a description of a HIPAA compliant data center IT architecture, contractual requirements, benefits and risks of data center outsourcing, and vendor selection criteria.
Here’s an excerpt from section 4.1. on the benefits of outsourcing HIPAA hosting:
Why would a covered entity with sensitive data outsource their hosting solution to a third-party? A HIPAA compliant hosting provider that has already passed an independent HIPAA audit can save time and money by eliminating the need to audit your vendor in addition to your own business. While it does not release you of the obligation and responsibility of meeting compliance, it helps you more readily achieve compliance and mitigate risk.
Additionally, managed hosting allows your IT team to focus on the applications directly related to your business, not on the day-to-day details involved with server updates, data center infrastructure, network management and security which can more readily be outsourced to a trusted provider.
A HIPAA compliant hosting provider can provide the latest tested and audited technology to help achieve compliance and secure your ePHI. With a variety of required and recommended security methods, you can trust experienced, certified professionals to maintain, monitor and accurately generate logs of activity on your servers.
Outsourcing allows you to benefit from the various levels of security that a quality hosting provider should have in place. These advantages include physical security, environmental controls, logged access and video surveillance, and multiple alarm systems to detect unauthorized access.
Network security includes protection of sensitive infrastructure, including managed servers, cloud, power and network infrastructure built with redundant routers, switches and paired universal threat management devices to protect sensitive information.
While the HITECH Act requires private accessibility on request by your patients, your outsourced hosting provider should never access PHI, but instead build, maintain and monitor the secure infrastructure that your sensitive information is stored and transmitted in.
The use of high-availability (HA) solutions in a fully redundant and compliant data center can allow clients to increase their uptime and PHI availability. Using an HA infrastructure can reduce the risk of business downtime due to a single point of failure. Outsourcing to a HIPAA hosting provider means your business can take advantage of your data center operator’s design of power connections, UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supplies) systems, generators, air conditioning and networks.
Outsourcing allows you to benefit from the latest virtualization technologies, such as fifth-generation VMware that dominates the market for applications that require a high degree of scalability. Choosing a high-performance managed cloud allows for the ability to scale servers up and down as needed to respond to the demands of end-users with fast deployment time.
To read about the Risks of Outsourcing, download our HIPAA white paper today.