New HIPAA awareness program under way

Karen Sunderland, left, explains to Carol Nockunas, RN, Outpatient Infusion Unit, Smilow Cancer Hospital, how the POPPS cart will visit clinical units throughout the hospital to increase awareness about patient privacy.
Karen Sunderland, left, explains to Carol Nockunas, RN, Outpatient Infusion Unit, Smilow Cancer Hospital, how the POPPS cart will visit clinical units throughout the hospital to increase awareness about patient privacy.

Starting this month, Karen Sunderland, senior auditor, Electronic Information Privacy, Yale New Haven Health System, as well as Corporate Compliance representatives, will be driving their "POPPS" cart to clinical units at Yale-New Haven, Greenwich and Bridgeport hospitals to increase awareness about HIPAA privacy and security.

POPPS (Protecting Our Patients' Privacy and Security) is an initiative of the YNHHS Office of Information Security (OIS) and Office of Privacy and Corporate Compliance (OPCC).

"The program makes it easy for staff to ask questions about privacy and security, provides contact information for OIS and OPCC and identifies opportunities to improve compliance," said Sunderland. "It is also a fun, interactive way to instill the importance of protecting patient confidentiality in our workforce members."

The POPPS cart includes quick tips, informational brochures and FAQs, along with items such as puzzles, games and stress relievers. Visits to clinical units will continue through December and take about 30 minutes.

"We're coordinating our schedule of visits with clinical managers at each hospital to ensure we meet with all workforce members and provide the information they need without disrupting patient care," noted Sunderland.

Employees who want more information about the POPPS cart should email Sunderland, karen.sunderland@ynhh.org, or Terrie Estes, compliance and privacy officer, terrie.estes@ynhh.org.