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Proposed changes to the HIPAA Privacy Rule could weaken patient data privacy protections, say Rita Bowen and Zachary Perry of the Association of Health Information Outsourcing Services.

A notice of proposed rulemaking from the Department of Health and Human Services was published in the Federal Register in January (see: HHS Reveals Proposed Changes to HIPAA Privacy Rule). On Tuesday, HHS’ Office for Civil Rights announced an extension of the deadline for the public to submit comments on the proposed changes to May 6. The changes will be finalized once comments have been reviewed.

Rita Bowen, MA, RHIA, CHPS, CHPC, SSGB

Rita Bowen, MA, RHIA, CHPS, CHPC, SSGB

Bowen is an established author and speaker on healthcare privacy and security. She is an active member of the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA), having served as its President and Board Chair, as a member of the Board of Directors and of the Council on Certification, and currently sits on the AHIMA Foundation Board of Directors. In her role at MRO, Bowen works with clients to ensure HIM policies and procedures are to code. Additionally, Bowen serves as the company’s Privacy and Compliance Officer (CPO).

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