Inbox: Telepractice Issues As I was preparing a presentation on telepractice for the International Association of Orofacial Myology convention this month in Washington, D.C., I suddenly was made aware of two unaddressed issues: No matter how HIPAA-compliant you are in every other aspect of doing telepractice, if you are not using a HIPAA-compliant ... Inbox
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Inbox  |   December 01, 2013
Inbox: Telepractice Issues
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Telepractice & Computer-Based Approaches / Inbox
Inbox   |   December 01, 2013
Inbox: Telepractice Issues
The ASHA Leader, December 2013, Vol. 18, 6. doi:10.1044/leader.IN7.18122013.6
The ASHA Leader, December 2013, Vol. 18, 6. doi:10.1044/leader.IN7.18122013.6
As I was preparing a presentation on telepractice for the International Association of Orofacial Myology convention this month in Washington, D.C., I suddenly was made aware of two unaddressed issues:
  • No matter how HIPAA-compliant you are in every other aspect of doing telepractice, if you are not using a HIPAA-compliant videoconferencing service, you are placing your patient and yourself at risk. I had reviewed all the ASHA documents on the telepractice portal and taken the webinar on telepractice in the schools, and not once had this issue been brought to my attention. I strongly suspect that there are many other well-intentioned SLPs who have no idea this could be a major problem. I had never thought about the fact that Skype and many other videoconferencing sites are not HIPAA-compliant. I would like to see ASHA bring this to that attention of all members. There are compliant sites available, but one needs to know to look for them.

  • As I explored further, I came upon some very slick websites that offer speech-language treatment to the public over the web. Several have tabs at the top: one for parents, and another for SLPs. But nowhere could I find anything about the sites being HIPAA-compliant. One website even boasted about how easy their service was to use because they use YouTube! I would like ASHA to check into these sites, so that other ASHA members do not fall into this potential legal nightmare.

Dianne Fonssagrives, Bakersfield, Calif.
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December 2013
Volume 18, Issue 12