As you started your new job at the hospital, the first week felt like you were back in school. You were taken on tours of the facility, went through orientation and had to take several in-house classes along with some classes online with the computer that you would be working with at your new workstation. You sat through the Health Insurance and Portability Accountability Act (HIPAA) training and were reminded by the instructor that you would be dealing with patient information daily. This subject became very important when they took you to the Management Information department where you had to get your computer privileges and sign up for a personal password.Instructions were giving for you to make it strong with a mixture of upper and lower case letters, numbers and special characters like the dollar sign or something similar. They did warn you of an internal tracking system showing everyone that is online and how to never give out your password and the last thing mentioned was how they would never call and ask you for you for your password. There was additional HIPAA training provided to you since your duties included working with the computer and emailing files. Since spring of 2005, the HIPAA security regulations became effective and this dealt with electronic personal health information.Access to certain systems or information such as human resources or payroll may require additional approvals. At this point in time you will not need access. You will get different access codes as you change positions and change your job responsibilities. This is how this company keeps up with what access keys people have on their jobs. If keys are involved you would be turning them in too. If you had access to hard files of patient information once you leave that department then you would no longer need or have access. HIPAA training reminds you of different bits of information like this as you go through the training.Always log out and off the computer if you are leaving the workstation. If you step away from your workstation and a certain amount of time passes with inactivity your screen saver will come on and you will need to use your password to log back on. Remote access works the same way. Staff members or contractors that work from home have virtual private networking capabilities and secure web pages and portals. The same HIPAA regulations apply to them too.
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