HHS offers guidance for HIPAA-compliant audio telehealth

The HIPAA Security Rule does not apply to audio-only telehealth services provided via landline, but does apply to calls over cellular and internet connections. (Imagy by Frederik Lipfert on Unsplash)

The Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services today issued guidance on providing audio-only telehealth services in compliance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

“Audio telehealth is an important tool to reach patients in rural communities, individuals with disabilities, and others seeking the convenience of remote options,” Office for Civil Rights Director Lisa Pino said in a news release. “This guidance explains how the HIPAA rules permit health care providers and plans to offer audio telehealth while protecting the privacy and security of individuals’ health information.”

HHS said the guidance is meant to ens…

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