New Final HIPAA Regulations Released

Ashley Kaplan, G.Neil Compliance Attorney

New HIPAA regulations were issued yesterday. The new rules clarify HIPAA's non-discrimination provisions and provide new guidelines on wellness plans (e.g., sponsoring employee memberships at fitness clubs, offering incentives for quitting smoking, etc.). While the effective date of the HIPAA regulations is February 12, 2007, employers have until July 1, 2007 to comply (the "first day of the company's plan year beginning on or after July 1, 2007").

If you have an existing G.Neil HIPAA product, you are still in compliance. The new HIPAA regulations add and clarify information that's addressed in our HIPAA Portability Guide so we’ll be working on updates along with some other ideas we have for products to help you stay in HIPAA compliance. Stay’ll hear about it first, right here.

And, as always, if you’ve got any specific suggestions for products you’d like to see, please feel free to share your ideas with us here.


The New E-discovery Regulations...who, me?

As the eCommerce Manager, I get every newsletter ever created that has to do with the Internet. Typically, I do a quick scan and move on...but this article caught my eye: New Rules Force Firms to Track E-Mails, IMs. The article talks about the new amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) relating to e-discovery regulations that went into effect on Friday, December 1.

Immediate panic disorder sets in - do I just confess that I emailed an "I love you" to my sweetie, downloaded a coupon for free Wendy's french fries and bookmarked the Broward County Schools website, this morning alone?

So what now? Do I call the IT or Legal Department to see if they're aware of this and taking steps to make sure we're in compliance with the law? Does this even apply to my company? I know what you were thinking...they don't mean me. I'm not a big public company. Sheesh, I don't even have an IT or Legal Department.

Right now, I couldn't tell you the answer. But don't worry, I've already forwarded it on to IT and Legal to find out. And I also sent it to the Product Development Legal Research team...I figured if I'm unclear whether it applies to me or not, then you might need some help, too.

In the meantime, what the heck do you do when you hear about some new law that may or may not be related to your business? How often do you blow it off thinking it's for the Enrons of the world or jump on the phone to your lawyer to make sure he's got you covered?

- Helene Kopel, eCommerce Manager

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