The Importance of HIPAA Compliant Accounting Software for Healthcare Companies
As healthcare grows in complexity, so does your organization. You’re managing multiple locations and practices, navigating changing reimbursement methods and initiating cost reduction initiatives, while manual processes are draining your productivity.
Challenges become especially elevated when it comes to getting insight into a multi-entity business. Management reports are extremely valuable, but they’re not always as useful as you’d like them to be. So, keeping your financials in good health is very important.
From our experience, accounting software usually problematic because of some combination of:
- Lack of visibility into patient profitability and physician performance across entities
- Controlling costs across entities in an environment of low reimbursement rates and operating margins
- Lengthy close process, delayed budget to actuals, manual forecast
- Lack of visibility into receivables and financial performance across entities
- Scaling processes when growth creates more touches for finance, more manual integrations, and workarounds
Plus, as the need to use Protected Health Information (PHI) to understand the health of practices grows, so does the need to maintain HIPAA compliance and keep PHI secure— including in your accounting system.
So, if you are considering moving to a new healthcare accounting system now or in the future, make sure you know the answers to these three questions…
- Can I store, process, or transmit protected health information (PHI) in the system? You may wonder what health information would be stored in an accounting system, but many healthcare organizations include patient names in financial records which may subject their accounting system to HIPAA requirements. Make sure you ask all vendors if their system offers specific functionality and assurances that your PHI data will be protected.
- Will you sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA)? A Business Associate Agreement, or BAA, is the contract you need your vendor to sign that spells out specifically what the vendor (the “business associate”) has been engaged to do with the PHI and the standards of protection for that PHI. Be wary of any vendor that won’t agree to sign a BAA.
- What options do I have if I need HIPAA-compliant cloud financials? If you are a healthcare organization whose financial system must comply with HIPAA, you need to have confidence that PHI data in your system is kept private and secure and access to PHI is tracked as required by HIPAA. If you need HIPAA-compliant financial systems today, it’s imperative that you understand how compliance is established by your vendor as NetSuite Won’t Support HIPAA.
Even if your organization doesn’t require a HIPAA compliant financial system today, you may need one in the future.
Sage Intacct not only has the tools in place to meet HIPAA requirements to audit PHI data access but is also Avertium (formerly Sword & Shield) certified for HIPAA compliance. Sage Intacct will sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) to formalize its commitments around HIPAA. The penalties for non-compliance with HIPAA are steep and may even include criminal liability.
To learn more about Sage Intacct’s HIPAA Compliant Cloud Accounting Software solution, click here to read the datasheet.
Hunter Health is the oldest Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) and Urban Indian Health Clinic in Wichita, Kansas is a great example of how moving to a modern, cloud-based solution helped provide greater financial visibility. Founded in 1976, the multi-location nonprofit offers high quality, affordable medical, dental, behavioral health, and health education services to 14,000 patients in underserved communities. Before Sage Intacct, our team tried to extract data from Microsoft Dynamics GP and organize it using Excel, but our ability to segregate financials by grant was so limited, we were always in reactive mode.”
Lora Winchell, CFO at Hunter Health, understands the power of cloud financials. “In the world of community health centers, you have to be able to look at your financials in a very dynamic way in order to both meet compliance requirements and actively manage operations,” says Winchell. “From my own experience, as well as every other CFO I’ve asked, there’s no financial system better than Sage Intacct when it comes to analyzing data across multiple dimensions.”
Express Information Systems also works with the Bexar County Medical Society, Urology San Antonio as well as Touchstone Communities, a multi-company establishment that is headquartered in San Antonio, with locations throughout Texas.
If you are ready to automate your financials, increase revenues by 25% without adding headcount, and learn more about the only HIPAA Compliant Cloud Accounting Software… it’s time to connect with Express!