Is HubSpot HIPAA Compliant?
Is HubSpot HIPAA compliant? No, HubSpot is not HIPAA compliant. Even though HubSpot offers the security measures necessary to protect PHI, they clearly state on their website that they are not a HIPAA compliant solution. This is because they don’t currently sign BAAs with their clients.
HubSpot is a popular name among businesses, developers, and marketers. You can also find that HubSpot provides training and certification for many professionals, including marketers at HubSpot Academy. And recently, HubSpot even launched a free CMS solution to the public.
With all that it does, it may not be obvious what HubSpot is or what it does for some of you. At its core, HubSpot is a Customer Relations Management (CRM) platform. It is one of the best and most secure CRM tools available today. But is HubSpot HIPAA compliant?
The short answer to this question is no, HubSpot is not “technically” HIPAA compliant. However, it is still true that HubSpot offers one of the most secure CRM systems in the world. And it includes special security measures to protect your precious PHI or Patient Health Information.
So, in a way, you could answer yes to the question, “is HubSpot HIPAA ready?”
Furthermore, you can use HubSpot as a HIPAA-compliant solution with the right set of tools. But it is crucial to understand when and how you can implement solutions to make HubSpot HIPAA-ready.
How To Ensure HubSpot HIPAA Compliancy For Your Healthcare Business?
HubSpot is one of the most popular CRM solutions in the world. It is highly user-friendly, supports a ton of useful integrations, and above all, it provides superior data security.
“HubSpot has 113,925 customers located across 120+ countries.” – Backlinko.
Many of these HubSpot customers belong to the healthcare industry and regularly deal with Protected Health Information PHI. But is HubSpot HIPAA compliant? And if not, how can many healthcare organizations use HubSpot without falling prey to hefty fines and complex legal loops?
If these are some of the questions you have asked yourself, you have come to the right place. Here, we discuss the question “is HubSpot HIPAA compliant?” and explain what being HIPAA compliant means to an automated print & direct mail solution like PostGrid.
But more importantly, we explain how HubSpot can help you ensure HIPAA-compliant communication and marketing for your organization.
HubSpot HIPAA Compliance
Whenever one of our clients comes to us asking, “is HubSpot HIPAA compliant?” we get this question A LOT. Typically, checking the HIPAA compliance of a software solution involves examining the security measures in place to protect PHI.
HubSpot already offers solid data security protection, and you will only waste time analyzing its security. So, if you are looking for a secure system to protect your data, HubSpot does more than enough. Unfortunately, that does not make HubSpot HIPAA compliant.
Why? Because for a software provider to become HIPAA compliant, it must be willing to sign a Business Associate Agreement or BAA.
Business Associate Agreement (BAA)
According to HIPAA regulations, a software provider like HubSpot is a business associate. Such solutions can create, store, and transmit PHI on the client’s behalf. Only if the software provider signs the BAA can the healthcare organization share its PHI with them.
So there you have it! The reason why HubSpot HIPAA compliance is not possible is that HubSpot does not sign the BAA. You can even go the HubSpot’s Customer Terms of Service, where they specifically state.
“The Subscription Service is not designed to comply with industry-specific regulations such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).”
But on the other hand, HubSpot is one of the best CRM tools in the market for healthcare organizations. And you already know that HubSpot has a robust security system too. You can easily ensure HubSpot HIPAA-ready communication for your organization with the right tools.
How To Make HubSpot HIPAA Compliant?
As you can see, HubSpot does not come HIPAA compliant out of the box. But the bright side is that you can make it HIPAA compliant if you already use HubSpot as your CRM solution. There are two ways to make HubSpot HIPAA-compliant for your healthcare organization.
1. Don’t Store PHI On HubSpot
The most straightforward trick in the book to get past the whole “is HubSpot HIPAA compliant?” business is not to collect PHI. No, we are not saying that you should stop collecting patient information. But instead, delete the PHI from HubSpot once someone you targeted becomes a patient and move it to a different HIPAA-compliant CRM.
2. Use a CRM Extension
The other way to ensure HubSpot HIPAA compliance is to use CRM extensions. However, it is in your best interest to make sure that these extensions you use are HIPAA compliant.
Of course, the extensions are technically external systems, and you must be careful with your extension choices.
Furthermore, it could also mean that you have to integrate multiple extensions for efficient healthcare communication.
Read More: Top 10 Best Healthcare CRM Software
HIPAA Compliance And Marketing
The reason why healthcare organizations are so concerned about HubSpot HIPAA compliance is because of its marketing capabilities. Using a CRM ensures more efficient and easy marketing of your healthcare services.
As you know, HIPAA protects your patient’s healthcare information, such as
- And more
It is crucial to maintain the confidentiality of patient data and ensure it is used as per the law. If your communication or marketing efforts are not HubSpot HIPAA compliant, it could lead to hefty fines. So, you may also want to check out our HIPAA compliance checklist to avoid these fines.
As you can imagine, marketing and sales tasks often require using PHI data. The best option here is to combine various digital platforms, so your organization remains HIPAA-compliant. And it would be best if you did the same for HubSpot HIPAA-ready communication.
How to Ensure HubSpot HIPAA-ready Communication?
As stated above, using a combination of digital platforms is the best way to ensure HubSpot HIPAA compliance. To get a better understanding of this, consider the different platforms you are already employing for your organization, like
- EMR or Electronic Medical Records system
- Automated marketing tools and apps
- Email/Mail subscription databases
- Patient portals
- Social media platforms and apps
One of the best ways to ensure the safety of your organization’s PHI data is to avoid cross-contamination. It means you need to be able to differentiate between all the apps, platforms, and accounts that can access your organization’s PHI data. And you must also ensure the data is legally useable for marketing purposes. This approach is ideal for providing HubSpot HIPAA-compliant communications.
Avoid Duplication of Information
Differentiating or categorizing your patient data into PHI and non-PHI is necessary for ensuring HubSpot HIPAA-compliant communications. However, it will also lead to duplication of information in some places. Hence, it might be a good idea for you to identify duplicate data and eliminate them.
How Does HubSpot Help You In HIPAA-Compliant Marketing And Communication?
As you know, HubSpot is a global leader when it comes to marketing. It provides you with some of the most innovative features to market to numerous businesses, including healthcare. We know this because we have helped several healthcare organizations with their HubSpot HIPAA compliance.
HubSpot’s security measures are so suitable that they can prevent HIPAA violations better than most other CRM solutions. Here are some ways HIPAA HubSpot compliance helps you protect PHI data.
Use HIPAA-Compliant Third-Party Integrations
The most widely used approach to ensure that a healthcare provider is HubSpot HIPAA-ready is to use unique integrations. It is the best way to streamline your marketing and communications without risking hefty fines or legal actions for HIPAA violations.
Take PostGrid, for example. PostGrid offers HIPAA-compliant direct mail services, which allow you to send marketing and regular communications to patients. Some of the correspondence you can send using PostGrid include
- Monthly Billing Statements
- Cancellation Notices
- Renewal Declarations
- Policy Reinstatement Notices
- Explanation of Benefits (EOB) Statements
- Lender-Placed Insurance Letters
- Notices of Collateral Protection Insurance
PostGrid for HubSpot is the perfect example of how a third-party integration can streamline healthcare communications without compromising HIPAA HubSpot compliance. Considering the stakes of a HIPAA violation, it is understandable if you have doubts about PostGrid’s capabilities. And maybe this excerpt from a conversation between our lead developer and a client can help you.
“We use a fully automated direct mail solution. Integrating PostGrid with your HubSpot is just as easy as using it. Our system integrates with all major tech stacks and tools. The HubSpot integration lets you connect PostGrid to over 1600 apps. And even if you have some trouble setting up PostGrid, my team is available to help you with any roadblocks you may encounter.”
Similarly, you can use different integrations to optimize all your communication channels. You can even automate an offline and complex communication channel like direct mail. Hence, it is not hard to do the same for your other communication channels, such as email, text messages, etc. However, you should ensure that the software solution can maintain your HIPAA HubSpot compliance.
Create Different Lists And Set Up Access To PHI
Any organization with a dedicated website is no stranger to custom drop-down forms used to collect user information. HubSpot lets you limit these drop-down fields so you can omit the portions that ask for PHI-related information.
In this case, you can group prospective customers by creating a separate contact database to ensure HIPAA HubSpot compliance. And once these prospects become patients/customers, you can transfer their information from the “contact” to the “patient” database.
This way, you can ensure that any PHI data in your custody goes through your EMR or patient portal instead of your website. Besides this, HubSpot also lets you update your database regularly. It includes deleting unnecessary information or contacts altogether from your contact account. Although repetitive, this simple step can go a long way in ensuring HubSpot HIPAA compliance.
However, we advise that you go for a one-way integration with your EMR. In other words, allow data transfer from HubSpot to ERM, not the other way around.
Utilize Opt-In Strategies
Using opt-in strategies is another great way to ensure HubSpot HIPAA compliance. Your healthcare prospects should be able to select the information they want to give you. Of course, you could always try using a consent form for the information they provide in different ways.
With HubSpot, you have the option to differentiate between the audience who wants to receive marketing messages and those who don’t. However, HIPAA compliance rules are often complex, and it is best to double-check to ensure HIPAA HubSpot compliance.
Consider including a check box in your marketing forms where the prospect can tick the option to receive marketing materials. But make sure you phrase the check box with a consent tone like “I wish to receive special healthcare offers and promotions from *organization name*.”
HubSpot is one of the most popular CRM solutions in the world and is used by numerous healthcare organizations. Although it offers data security almost on par with HIPAA standards, it is not HIPAA compliant because it does not sign a BAA. Hence, it would be best to have HIPAA-compliant marketing and communication solutions like PostGrid to ensure HubSpot HIPAA compliance.
With advanced solutions like PostGrid, you can be sure that your PHI data is safe and secure. Furthermore, you can sign a BAA with PostGrid and dictate when and how it can use your PHI data. Whether it is regular communication or marketing mail, you can send it all with a single system.
Our HubSpot integration allows you to personalize, print, and mail your healthcare communications, even in bulk. As a result, healthcare communication and marketing are significantly accessible. Therefore, you no longer need to wonder, “is HubSpot HIPAA compliant?”
You can use similar solutions to PostGrid for streamlining healthcare communication across different channels, such as text messaging, email, etc. It is the most efficient and practical way to ensure an organization is HubSpot HIPAA-compliant.