Editor’s note: This is another in a series of articles on how to comply with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requirements.

Have you verified that the systems in your practice and those of your vendors can collect all the data elements required by HIPAA?

By now, most pediatricians have contacted vendors, clearinghouses and health plans to determine their readiness/compliance plan for HIPAA. They have either filed for an extension to the transaction standards or are ready to meet the looming Oct. 15, 2002, deadline.

The next step toward HIPAA compliance is to conduct a data gap analysis. Doing so verifies that the system has the capability of collecting all of the data elements required by HIPAA.

The data gap analysis will reveal whether a current system can be upgraded or whether new systems must be installed to ensure collection of all data elements. It is essential to contact...

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