Healthcare providers across every specialty rely on high-performing technology to both treat and support their patients. Whether it’s integrating a cloud-based CRM to automate back office functioning such as appointment scheduling or billing, or incorporating the latest, state-of-the-art connected medical devices into a treatment protocol, innovation is at the very core of most healthcare organization’s day-to-day processes.

Because of this, maintaining regulatory compliance and cybersecurity integrity while operating in the ever-changing world of technology are top priorities for healthcare organizations across the U.S.

What to Expect from a HITRUST-Certified Company

In recent years, healthcare systems and organizations of every size and scope have found themselves entangled in full on, continuous cyber warfare. They are constantly fighting an uphill battle against increasingly vigilant hackers who are intent on unleashing increasingly complex and sophisticated cyber threats.

To keep internal IT infrastructures and patient intelligence safe, healthcare administrators operating in every industry are actively pursuing HITRUST Certification as a means to evaluate cybersecurity efforts and results.

According to HITRUST, the HITRUST CSF Certification is the most widely adopted security framework in the healthcare industry.

81% of hospitals and 80% of health plans have adopted the framework in some way, either as a best practices resource or as the basis for their information protection program.

What is HITRUST CSF Certification– and why should you care?

HITRUST is a third-party testing entity that oversees and issues the HITRUST CSF Certification to qualifying vendors and organizations. To become certified, a company must partner with an authorized HITRUST CSF Certified Assessor to successfully complete and pass a thorough security evaluation, independently validating that the organization has met industry-defined mandates and maintains the highest standards of cyber risk management and patient data loss prevention.

To obtain and maintain certification, an applicant must endure several HITRUST assessments that scrutinize their existing processes and controls to unearth possible vulnerabilities and performance lapses.

A reputable assessor will conduct a rigorous, multi-phase evaluation that includes:

Phase I. Readiness Of Current Technology Environment

Your chosen certification partner will carefully examine the policy and procedure documentation currently used in your technology environment to measure it against HITRUST standards and requirements. The assessor will also perform a small sample test of controls to determine if they are working as designed. Any identified Phase I gaps will be documented for client remediation.

Phase II. Remediation

Your organization will have an opportunity to develop a framework for the resolution of any discovered regulatory or performance lapses. Many healthcare companies often partner directly with their chosen HITRUST assessor to develop a systematic plan of action with specific deliverables and appropriate documentation for comprehensive gap remediation.

Phase III. Validation

The applying organization has the opportunity to adjust or correct processes and controls for subsequent assessment following remediation of identified gaps.  Your chosen assessor will then perform extensive testing of defined requirements in each designated category and submit your assessment for HITRUST certification.  

Benefits Of HITRUST CSF Certification

HITRUST CSF Certification is valid for 24 months on the condition that an interim review is completed and the program’s continuous monitoring standards are met.

For healthcare organizations across the country, this stringent testing process helps their brand stand apart from others in the market as an innovator that prioritizes security program initiatives and consumer transparencies.

Beyond serving as a mission-critical service differentiator with consumers, a HITRUST certification delivers several internal benefits as well, including:

Optimized Efficiencies

In addition to boosting security measures, the HITRUST CSF Certification establishes a prescriptive standard for achieving and maintaining consistent internal technology operations to optimize the implementation and measurement of controls throughout applicable portions of the healthcare organization.

Expedited Network Assessment

HITRUST CSF Certified Assessors are trained to recognize the strengths and potential weaknesses of an existing technology environment to quickly and effectively evaluate current processes, identifying what works and what needs modification to keep your internal intelligence effectively protected.

Audit Ease

Pursuing HITRUST CSF Certification can also save you both time and money in the event of an audit, as you’ll be required to maintain and show evidence of several required practices, policies, and procedures to retain your certification. In short, you’ll already have an established reporting and metric analysis process that helps your organization use real-time data retrieval to demonstrate compliance with a multitude of regulatory and legislative programs.