Gold Seal Standard Highlights Public Trust In Medical Banking Domain

A 15 month effort and recent pilot program culminate in the industry’s first health data privacy and security accreditation for medical banking constituencies

Franklin, TN (March 13, 2008) Just weeks before the Sixth National Medical Banking Institute to be held April 1-3, 2008 in Marietta, GA, the Medical Banking Project (MBProject), an authoritative pioneer in the formation of the medical banking industry, announced the creation of the first "Gold Seal Standard" for health data privacy and security for medical banking constituencies. The first version was created after a 15-month multi-stakeholder effort by MBProject members, and highlights the research firm’s ongoing efforts to assure the highest standards of quality for emerging medical banking programs.

"We urged leaders to adopt a program that instills public trust in medical banking programs in 2001," said MBProject founder John Casillas. The Institute has strong roots in the national movement to implement HIPAA compliance among medical banking constituents. The first two Institutes held in 2002 and 2003 were 100% focused on privacy and security of health data, policy issues and operating areas where the two industries converge. In recent weeks federal and commercial groups have announced the creation of privacy frameworks that will be explored at the Institute. "We have increasing support from employers, banks, financial services firms, healthcare and IT firms and others, marking that it’s time to implement this critical program," said Casillas.

Industry surveys suggest that banks are global leaders in the area of public trust. "Banks have considerable and ongoing investments in technology, processes and controls to ensure the bad guys don’t get our money," said Casillas. "The Gold Seal program recognizes that medical banking is a new industry, and that the convergence of systems calls for a supplemental review to assure that the uncompromising standards and controls used by banks to secure our money will be used to thwart those who want to inappropriately access our health data." The program adds criteria outlined in HIPAA to existing banking regulations and controls, and is designed to adapt to additional federal, state and commercial privacy frameworks as they evolve.

MBProject called on its members to form a new "Accreditation Review Council" at the 2007 Institute, leading to a 15-month R&D effort isolating banking and healthcare regulations and related accreditation programs. The Council reached out to government and industry groups as it formed its framework. By January 2008, both the criteria and an accreditation methodology were adopted by the Council and readied for a pilot program.

The two-day pilot was conducted by John Phelan, PhD, an expert at Milliman, Inc., a global consulting and actuarial firm that works with a range of organizations on HIPAA compliance, and BNY Mellon Working Capital Solutions, a division of The Bank of New York Mellon. To meet the pilot criteria, BNY Mellon’s healthcare team gathered 23 internal subject matter experts who would be impacted by the program. A post-pilot survey of the experts was conducted to assess the effectiveness of the new program. BNY Mellon and Milliman will present the results at the April Institute.

"The pilot was a successful and critical step in an accreditation program that demonstrates the financial service industry’s commitment to assuring the highest security and confidentiality of personal health information," Phelan said.

"The work of the Council is a key foundation for building a medical banking ecosystem that will improve healthcare in America and around the world. We’re excited about their work and eager to support the Gold Seal among our constituencies," said Casillas.

To learn more about the Institute or to register, please go to:

>> Institute Homepage & Agenda: http://www.mbproject.org/6mbi2008.php

>> Registration: http://www.mbproject.org/6MBI2008_registration.php

Many thanks to our Sponsors:

>> Educational Grantor: BancTec, Inc.

>> Platinum Sponsor: ACS, Inc.

>> Gold Sponsor: OptumHealthBank

>> Silver Sponsors: The Bank of New York Mellon; Fifth Third Bank; PNC Bank; Teleperformance

>> Media Sponsors: Healthcare Finance News, Future Healthcare

About the Medical Banking Project…
MBProject is a pioneering authority that coined the term “medical banking™” to denote the emerging global convergence of banking and healthcare systems to improve health costs, quality and access. Our educational forums, workgroups and pilot programs showcase visionary ideas and initiatives that inform policy, commerce and academia. Supported by a diverse constituency, MBProject conducts research and outreach that defines and facilitates medical banking™, and this supports our mission to convert digital savings into charitable resources. Our work demonstrates how banks can improve healthcare programs for consumers, care givers, health plans and employers. For more information please go to: http://www.mbproject.org. Contact: Evelyn Marquez Sanchez, 615-794-2009, info@mbproject.org