How We Assisted a Development Firm to Fill 47 Security Gaps to Develop a HIPAA Compliant Healthcare App?

A healthcare app or any other digital healthcare product stores and shares many crucial PHI of patients and their family members. To ensure the security of ePHI, federal and state governments have imposed many laws and regulations which should be adhered to. These regulations require expertise for implementation.

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The Project

A Canada-based app development firm which has been developing a healthcare collaboration platform to streamline communication between different healthcare entities, owned by a group of physicians approached SyS Creations to decode the complex PHIPA and HIPAA compliance rules & regulations, carry out gap analysis and implement the ways to ensure the ePHI security to be compliance-ready.

We discussed requirements broadly. The app development firm and healthcare startup owners had many common concerns related to healthcare compliance.


: Healthcare


: Toronto, Canada


: 10-20


: 2020


: Healthcare Technology (Compliance Consulting)

Objectives & Problem Statements

  • Carry out security standard audit, asset & device audit, and security risk assessment.
  • Discover the app security gaps which leave ePHI open for unauthorized users.
  • Find out the easiest and workable solutions to fill those security gaps.
  • Identify the high-risk security gaps and advanced security solutions to eliminate them.
  • Gain an ability to track the data breach.
  • Define a post-breach process.
  • The app should meet all HIPAA, PHIPA requirements.
  • The app should also meet secure healthcare app requirements suggested by individual regulatory bodies such as the College of Nurses of Ontario and Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

The Action Plan

  • Our healthcare compliance team understood the workflow and architecture of the admin app as well as the patient app with deep-dive analysis of the application.
  • The team carried out a security standard audit, asset & device audit, security risk assessment and gap analysis to find out app security gaps.
  • Healthcare compliance experts planned the HIPAA/PHIPA compliance strategy and prepared a straightforward gap analysis document.
  • The document contained the current state of the app, detailed information, required state of the app, HIPAA/PHIPA standards, and necessity to achieve required state. The following is one such example.
  • With the help of our cloud and the network security team, the healthcare compliance team defined a personalized way to discover the data breach and documented a post-breach process or strategy.

The Outcome

  • Security gaps:The client has filled 47 security gaps in the healthcare collaboration platform.
  • ePHI security standards:The platform is meeting the ePHI security standards imposed by individual regulatory bodies.
  • Data breach acknowledgment: The client gained the ability to discover the data breach.
  • Post-breach strategy:With a defined post-breach strategy, the client can act professionally and legally in the case of a data breach.
  • HIPAA/PHIPA compliant app:The ultimate outcome was a HIPAA/PHIPA compliant healthcare platform.

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