It would be hard to find a person living in the United States that hasn't signed a HIPAA Authorization Form in their lifetime. As Robinsue Frohboese, Acting OCR Director, said "the HIPAA Privacy Rule affects nearly anyone who interacts with the healthcare system." As the deadline for comments to the Proposed Rule was coming due on March 22, 2021, it is welcome news to stakeholders that they have an extra 45 days to submit their comments to OCR. The new deadline is May 6, 2021.
Katten has previously summarized some of the most important proposed changes found in the 357-page HIPAA Proposed Rule released by HHS on December 10, 2020 - HHS Proposes Significant Changes to the HIPAA Privacy Rule.
If finalized in its current form, the Proposed HIPAA Rule would have broad effects - including on topics like the speed at which a provider would need to respond to a records request to the permitted uses of the medical records. It's important to evaluate how the proposed rules could affect healthcare providers and to potentially offer comments on the real world implications so that OCR can release a Final Rule that providers can actually follow.
“OCR anticipates a high degree of public interest in providing input on the proposals because the HIPAA Privacy Rule affects nearly anyone who interacts with the health care system,” said Acting OCR Director Robinsue Frohboese.