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Business Associates

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) recognizes that Fairfax County may require the assistance of various third parties in order to support the provision of health care services to our residents and employees. The third parties include businesses, contractors, and persons that are not always covered by the HIPAA regulations. The HIPAA regulations identify these businesses, contractors, and persons as business associates. Fairfax County, including the Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board, requires our business associates to provide satisfactory assurances that there will be no degradation of privacy safeguards when information is shared with them.

HIPAA mandates that an agreement be established between a covered entity (Fairfax County and its agencies) and any business associate that provides services on our behalf where individually identifiable health information may be encountered during the course of those services. For the purposes of HIPAA, a business associate is any professional and consultant services contractor performing services for or on behalf of Fairfax County where protected health information is created or exchanged. The business associate agreement is required to ensure the contractor will maintain the privacy and confidentiality of protected health information as well as provide necessary access to the information in accordance with the law.

The business associate agreement is required independent of the monetary value of the contract. Business associate agreements may be required for a small purchase order for a one-time shredding of old patient records to a multi-year contract for health information system software maintenance. Business associate agreements with Fairfax County are required regardless of the jurisdiction where the original contract was awarded.

View the Fairfax County HIPAA Business Associate Agreement (PDF).
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