All Points Mobile Shredding Blog

Paper Medical Records: Secure Shredding Guidelines

Best Practices To Ensure Compliance & Security

A stethoscope and a pen are sitting next to a medical intake form on a desk surface.In the healthcare industry, many organizations are still making the transition from paper to digital files. With that, the need to understand and follow best practices when it comes to collecting, storing and disposing of paper records is crucial to ensure your facility is within compliance with state and federal mandates. Here’s a quick guide on best practices:

Know & Follow HIPAA Document Retention Requirements

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) is truly the cornerstone of patient privacy protection. The law, which was established in 1996, created national standards to protect sensitive patient health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent. The law mandates very specific rules when it comes to  the retention and disposal of medical records. All healthcare facilities must understand the rules when it comes to HIPAA and follow them strictly, if not they risk compliance violations and fines.

Perform Inventory of Paper Records on a Regular Basis

Before shredding any records or files, it’s important to perform inventory. This helps you ensure that all files that must be shredded have been accounted for and that those that are required to be retained do not get shredded before their date of destruction.

Follow Shredding Requirements Mandated by HIPAA

HIPAA has very specific requirements when it comes to the destruction of a patient’s protected health information (PHI). Adherence to the rules ensures that you are safeguarding patient privacy which also protects your facility from non-compliance issues.

Work with an Industry Certified Shredding Company

To protect your facility and your patients, partner with a reputable shredding and destruction company that has earned NAID AAA certification. This certification ensures you are working with a company that complies with the highest standards accepted by the information destruction industry. NAID Certified companies undergo audits that scrutinize their hiring practices, procedures for destruction, equipment, and facilities.

Train Employees on HIPAA Compliance

All staff members working in healthcare facilities must be trained on HIPAA regulations for document collection, storage, retention and disposal. An informed team is vital to maintaining compliance and reducing the risk of privacy breaches.

Keep Meticulous Records of All Shredding Performed

With every shred, you should receive a certificate of destruction which provides details of the shred. All organizations should keep records of each shred that includes the dates and quantities of records shredded. This documentation will serve as proof of compliance and gives you peace of mind in the event of an audit.

All Points Mobile Shredding is an NAID AAA certified company founded in 1994 and located in Stuart, Florida. We can assist you with full service shredding and destruction. We provide regular shredding schedules, secure document storage bins and employee training. Give us a call today or complete the form on this page to get a quick quote.

 

Dawn Connelly

Dawn is the vice president of All Points Mobile Shredding. All Points Mobile Shredding is a family-owned and operated on-site document destruction company that has been serving the Treasure Coast, Palm Beaches, and surrounding areas since 1994.

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