Creating a Culture of Compliance: 5 Tips for Implementing an Effective Compliance Program

Regulatory compliance is an essential part of healthcare operations. With HIPAA settlements reaching over $22 million in 2016, the need for a culture of compliance is clear.1 But what does it mean to create a culture of compliance and how can an organization get started?

It’s easy to view compliance as a necessary evil rather than a valuable asset. And, it’s a dangerously common outlook; only 12% of organizations consider themselves very highly prepared for a compliance audit.2 By fostering a culture of compliance, you can change this perception and be prepared in case of an audit. Not only will your organization be protecting itself against regulatory risk, but your staff will also learn expectations for acceptable behavior, be able to return their focus to providing high-quality care, and help the organization run as smoothly as possible.

5 Tips for Implementing an Effective Compliance Program

  • Create Rock-solid Policies and Procedures – A well-defined code of conduct, along with your organization’s policies and procedures are the foundation of your compliance program, and their ultimate purpose should be to protect your organization from risk – both external, legal risks as well as internal ones.
  • Train and Educate Your Staff – Policies and procedures won’t do much unless your staff is familiar with them. Education and training are also an essential part of an effective compliance program – remember that new employees aren’t the only ones who need training. Ongoing training and education based on areas of risk are important are an important part of maintaining an active culture of compliance.
  • Communicate Effectively – Maintaining open lines of communication between employees and management, between patients and providers and between management and partner organizations is essential to identifying areas of risk. It’s vital to create an environment where people feel safe bringing up concerns or mistakes.
  • Carryout Internal Audits – By conducting regular audits, you can identify areas of risk before they become a problem, prioritize areas for improvement, and gain a deeper understanding of processes and procedures as they currently exist at your facility.
  • Document and Record  Documentation and record keeping is an important part of an effective compliance program and this means having effective technology in place. Spreadsheets can only go so far in effectively tracking compliance before the struggle with scalability and reliability becomes too difficult to manage. With a Learning Management System, you can easily track and report out on employee training records so that you can remedy risk areas with targeted education.

So Where Do We Begin?

MedBridge is here to help! Creating a culture of compliance is a dynamic process with a foundation in training and awareness. We’ve prepared a suite of courses targeted towards ensuring that you and others at your facility have the tools and information to remain in compliance, assess risks, and focus on what you love: providing quality patient care.

Create a Culture of Compliance with MedBridge

Mitigate risk, maintain profitability, and stay in accordance with regulatory requirements.

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  2. Brandon Hall Group, Compliance Training: Critical to the Business, 2014.