The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has announced its plan to conduct the second phase of HIPAA audits in early 2016.  This announcement comes in response to the Office of Inspector General’s report recommending that the OCR should strengthen its oversight of covered entities in a number of ways.

The OCR stated that the Phase 2 audits will test the efficacy of a combination of desk reviews of HIPAA policies as well as on-site reviews.  The OCR also stated that the audits will cover both covered entities and business associates. Finally, the OCR explained that it is planning a permanent audit program.