05-15-14 | Blog Post

Webinar: Healthcare IT and HIPAA policy attorneys discuss risks of sharing PHI in the ACO and protection strategies

Blog Posts

Accountable Care requires clear visibility into longitudinal patient data across multiple providers, but interoperability introduces legal and security risks that must be carefully navigated if organizations hope to become trusted, data sharing entities. In this complex environment, collaborative knowledge sharing is just what the doctor is ordering to improve outcomes while reducing costs.

When attorneys Tatiana Melnik and Carrie Nixon met for coffee at HIMSS in Orlando, each realized the combination of their respective fortes would be beneficial to the other’s clients in the bigger picture of accomplishing meaningful use. Now it’s your turn to reap the benefits of that alliance when they co-present the latest edition of Online Tech’s ‘Tuesdays at 2’ webinar, PHI in the ACO: Risk Management, Mitigation, and Data Collection Issues.

Melnik, a frequent contributor to the Online Tech webinar series, concentrates her practice on healthcare data privacy, security and regulatory compliance. Nixon focuses on healthcare law and policy issues relating to the Affordable Care Act reforms. She launched Healthcare Solutions Connection, a network of consultants providing integrated service solutions for the healthcare industry.

At 2 p.m. on Tuesday, May 20, Melnik and Nixon will share lessons learned from early adopters, role of patient health and quality, legal risk exposure, risk mitigation strategies, role of technology and data collection in coordinated care, and ways to align risk management programs, technology, and interests to improve patient health and quality of care. This is the first in a two-part presentation on PHI in the ACO. The second part, A Focus on Data: Analytics, Collection, Risks and Contracting Considerations, will be held on June 17.

Register: PHI in the ACO: Risk Management, Mitigation and Data Collection Issues (May 20)

Register: PHI in the ACO: A Focus on Data: Analytics, Collection, Risks and Contracting Considerations (June 17)

Nixon said it is critical to understand that an ACO is not going to succeed in a vacuum, but rather the data obtained from patients must be analyzed to determine what care given can succeed in a lower-cost environment.

“I hope that people walk away understanding the important role that Health Information Technology and data play in making an ACO successful,” Nixon said. “In general, I think ACOs have become sort of a catch phrase … ‘I need to have an ACO,’ ‘Should I form an ACO?’ The larger picture is the important role that data and patient data plays in an ACO. You’ve got to be looking at data, analyzing data and asking questions about how we improve based on that data.”

Because of that dependence on data, Melnik said she hopes the key takeaway for attendees of the webinar is, simply, that “an ACO cannot succeed without the proper use of technology.”

While Nixon will explain why it’s important to collect and analyze data, Melnik will focus on the importance of keeping that data safe. She will discuss the risks and concerns surrounding data use, sharing and aggregation, the importance of data analytics, and the related privacy and security concerns.

Tatiana Melnik is an attorney concentrating her practice on IT, data privacy and security, and regulatory compliance. Melnik regularly writes and speaks on IT legal issues, including HIPAA/HITECH, cloud computing, mobile device policies, telemedicine, and data breach reporting requirements, is a Managing Editor of the Nanotechnology Law and Business Journal, and a former council member of the Michigan Bar Information Technology Law Council.

Melnik holds a JD from the University of Michigan Law School, a BS in Information Systems and a BBA in International Business, both from the University of North Florida.

Carrie Nixon is the CEO of Nixon Law Group and President of Accountable Care Law & Policy. She is a founding member of Healthcare Solutions Connection, a network of expert consultants providing integrated service solutions for the healthcare industry. As a longtime attorney for a variety of clients in the assisted living and long-term care industry, Nixon has on-the-ground experience with the unique challenges facing those who serve our aging population. She has successfully defended these clients against malpractice claims and deficiency citations, helping them to navigate the ever-changing regulatory and risk management landscape.

Nixon holds a JD from the University of Virginia Law School.

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