In May, the Texas Health Services Authority (THSA) and the Health Information Trust Alliance (HITRUST) announced that Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX) became the first health plan in the state to receive SECURETexas: Health Information Privacy and Security Certification. By achieving this certification, BCBSTX is recognized as a leader demonstrating its commitment to protecting the privacy of its members’ health care information.
THSA, in collaboration with HITRUST, launched SECURETexas to recognize providers, health care institutions and other organizations that meet both state and federal privacy and security regulations. This designation comes after a thorough assessment that involves review of more than 150 IT security checks across 16 departments. The Texas Legislature directed THSA to create this certification program in 2011 through Texas House Bill 300, authored by State Representative Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) and sponsored by Senator Jane Nelson (R-Flower Mound).
Texas is the only state in the country that offers certification for compliance with state and federal privacy and security laws that govern the use of protected health information (PHI). Any organization that uses, stores and/or exchanges PHI is considered a covered entity as defined by Texas Medical Records Privacy Act, and is eligible for SECURETexas certification.
This achievement was particularly noteworthy because BCBSTX is the state’s largest health insurer and provider of health benefits, working with nearly 80,000 physicians and health practitioners and 500 hospitals to serve five million members in all 254 counties. The SECURETexas certification recognizes the significant efforts made to protect members’ privacy and security.
To learn about the benefits of SECURETexas and how to get started, visit www.securetexas.org.