Many challenges present themselves in pharmacies daily, and we’d like to offer some helpful tips to tackle the important challenge of hiding or removing patient information from medication containers. This ensures you stay compliant with the HIPAA Privacy Rule.
Many different types of medication containers are prepared by and returned to your pharmacy every day, ranging from IV bags, to vials and prescription bottles. Since medication containers vary extensively in size and shape, you are tasked with a unique challenge when removing all patient protected health information (PHI) from each container. Some common methods of de-identifying medication containers affect workflow efficiency, as well as drive up costs. Adding various types of containers into your hospital’s shredding service or incinerator is time-consuming and very costly, since price is typically calculated by weight.
Don’t risk a potential HIPAA Privacy Rule Violation.
Not only can de-identifying medication containers reduce efficiency among staff and increase costs, but some common methods of removing PHI may not properly conceal all PHI, leading to potential HIPAA Privacy Rule violations.
Here Are Five Easy, HIPAA-Compliant Tips for De-Identifying Medication Containers
Black out PHI with a Security Marker
This might be the most widely-used method, but it might not adequately conceal all PHI, risking identification. This method can be quite time consuming and there’s also a tendency for the ink to smear and get on your hands when not fully dry.
Stamp over labels with an ID Security Stamp
A number of identification security stamps are on the market to deter identity theft. These stamps can also be applied to medication labels to obscure PHI, but they may not mask all data completely, risking patient privacy and security.
Apply Identi-Hide™ Label Covers
Simply apply this label over the IV bag label to cover up the patient information. This specifically designed label, with its heavy black text pattern and black adhesive, completely conceals sensitive patient information, making it impossible to read from either side of the bag.
Use Self-Shred Labels on IV Bags
After IV bag use, just peel off the top portion of this piggyback label to remove PHI before discarding the bag. This easy-to-use label protects your pharmacy and patient information, while eliminating the time and struggle associated with removing and shredding old labels.
Use Perforated Labels to Remove Patient Info
Remove patient information from the label completely using this perforated label. Just quickly and easily peel off the patient information when ready. These are great for reissuing IV bags.
Check out PDC’s line of Pharmacy HIPAA Compliant Labels
For questions about choosing the right ID solutions to meet your specific needs or for customized solutions, please contact us at (800) 435-4242.