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Jennifer L. Rathburn quoted in article “Don’t overlook HIPAA, data security issues during merger, acquisition”

Medical Practice Compliance Alert

Following is an excerpt:

Also, frequently the entities focus more on how to reconcile and consolidate or convert electronic patient records but not on whether the electronic data is secure when doing so or whether it’s subject to vulnerabilities, says attorney Jennifer Rathburn with Quarles & Brady in Milwaukee.

“This is a huge area of concern. It’s something companies don’t do very well,” she points out.

Note that if you unearth HIPAA issues, that’s normally not a deal-breaker, but it can affect the merger or sale regarding allocation of risks, indemnification requirements and related issues, says Rathburn.

Identifying data privacy and security problems ahead of time also helps the entity resolve them quickly once the merger or acquisition has been finalized.