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7/22/2009
05:41 PM
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HITRUST: Security Certifications For CSF Under Way

Five professional services firms have sought and achieved their CSF Certifier/Consulting status: Verizon Business, Deloitte & Touche, Accenture, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and VeriSign

Frisco, TX " July 16, 2009 " The Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) announced today that the first healthcare organizations are beginning the certification phase of the Common Security Framework (CSF). In addition, HITRUST is experiencing a significant increase in licenses of the Common Security Framework across all segments of the healthcare industry: health plans, providers, pharmacies, data exchanges and service providers. Besides providing prescriptive guidance and greater efficiencies for the implementation of information security and privacy programs, motivation driving adoption of the framework includes business partner compliance, health information exchanges, HIPAA compliance and the move to protect Electronic Health Records as part of the HITECH Act (part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or ARRA). "We are pleased to have been engaged to perform the first HITRUST CSF assessment for Certification and have seen a steady increase in the amount of CSF-related opportunities. We are hearing a different message from the industry now: what used to be 'Why would we adopt the HITRUST CSF?' is now 'Why wouldn't we adopt the CSF?'" said Chris Hall, Senior Executive, Accenture. HITRUST has also seen an increase in the number of professional services firms pursuing CSF Certifier and CSF Consulting Firm status. Those firms recently obtaining status include Verizon Business as a CSF Certifier and Deloitte & Touche LLP as a CSF Consulting firm. Existing CSF Certifiers are Accenture, PricewaterhouseCoopers and VeriSign. "We are pleased to have obtained CSF Consultant status. HITRUST has created a robust certification process, rigorous screening and third-party audit process that should provide for consistent and meaningful results," said Amry Junaideen, Principal, Deloitte & Touche LLP. Healthcare organizations are facing a rise in the number of security breaches and theft of sensitive health information, growing demands from federal and state regulations, and mandates to reduce costs and operate more efficiently. By leveraging the Common Security Framework - a single prescriptive, scalable IT control framework that is aligned with the requirements of their business - healthcare organizations can now better manage risk; save time and expense that would be spent in determining their requirements and in auditing business associates; and increase information protection while better managing information security related expenses. "The HITRUST Common Security Framework is becoming the de facto approach to responsibly and practically addressing information security in the healthcare industry. In just three months' time we are seeing significant adoption across every segment and within both large and small organizations alike," said Daniel Nutkis, Chief Executive Officer, HITRUST. "Although we anticipated interest from healthcare organizations, what is surprising is the impact on business associate compliance audits and health information exchanges," Nutkis added. More information on Qualified CSF Resources can be found at www.HITRUSTalliance.net/qualified_resources/. About HITRUST The Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) was born out of the belief that information security should be a core pillar of, rather than an obstacle to, the broad adoption and utilization of health information technologies and exchanges. This, in turn, is critical to realizing the related promise of quality improvement and cost containment in America's healthcare system. HITRUST is collaborating with healthcare, business, technology, and information security leaders to establish a certifiable framework that can be used by any and all organizations that create, access, store or exchange personal health and financial information. Beyond the establishment of the first common security framework, HITRUST is also driving adoption and widespread confidence in the framework and sound risk management practices through awareness, education, advocacy and other outreach activities. For more information, visit http://www.HITRUSTalliance.net.

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