If you are in the healthcare industry, then it is natural to be concerned about patient security as people share sensitive data with you. Thus, a major decision to take is to choose the right, HIPAA compliant hosting provider.
What is HIPAA compliant hosting ?
HIPAA or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act was issued back in 1996 to ensure that patient data is safe. The use of health insurance and the requirement to share social security besides all other personal data by the patients has made it a serious matter to look at.
All health centers are thoroughly monitored to ensure their database is secure and risk-free for the patients.
As a result, it is very important that you choose a proper hosting which protects all this information.
In this article, you will learn how to choose the right hosting provider that is HIPAA compliant and I will also discuss and compare 7 best hosting providers out there that you can rely on for your health center
Do I need HIPAA compliant email ?
If you are Healthcare organizations which are storing e-PHI (protected health information) data of patient’s then you need to follow HIPAA guidelines to protect the data while storing, communicating and transmission of data between different parties with whom you signed BAA
You can follow this HIPAA compliance checklist to get started
What email is HIPAA compliant ?
|Egress||Inspect email, domain analysis, admin reporting||YES||£90 / User/ Per Year|
|Hushmail||Drag and drop forms builder, ESIGN and UETA compliant||YES||$29.9/User/month|
|Barracuda||Email continuity, Link Scanning, Outbound filtering||YES||On Request|
|Paubox||Only 1 login Protection against SPAM, phishing attacks||YES||$10|
user / month
|NeoCertified||Email monitoring, Email reminder, Microsoft Outlook||YES||$99/user/annually|
You can check complete HIPAA compliant email service provider
How To Choose A HIPAA Compliant Hosting Provider?
It is important to be aware that you can be severely penalized if you are found in any way violating the HIPAA privacy and security compliance.
Hence, you first need to make sure your hosting provider maintains strict security on both logical and network access levels through firewalls, and strict encryption to prevent unauthorized access of data. In fact, to be labeled as HIPAA compliant, a hosting provider has to be strongly secured in their physical location.
On top of that, it has to be a managed hosting with strong cyber-security and constant monitoring.
While choosing a HIPAA compliant hosting, you must ensure the following:
- Sign a Business Associate Agreement (BAA) with the hosting provider, clearly stating their responsibilities and agreeing to ensure the security required to be HIPAA compliant.
- Sign a Service Level Agreement (SLA) which identifies the network infrastructure set up to control actions on specific elements such as disaster recovery, network uptime, technical support response time, etc. And later ensure that they follow these rules.
- Find a way to ensure that all the HIPAA security requirements are met for data protection at the physical, logical, and network levels. Plus, ensure that the backups made are also secured from getting lost in any unexpected disasters.
- It’s best if your hosting provider has in-house experts on HIPAA. That way, any confusion or problems may arise, you will get a quick solution without any harm done.
Having said all these, now let us look at the best hosting providers out there that are HIPAA compliant and have proven themselves to be trusted as hosting providers for the healthcare industry.
7 Best HIPAA Compliant Hosting Providers Compared
When you look for HIPAA compliant hosting service, you will get many options. But the following are the best available out there. They all implement high levels of security and are widely used by large healthcare centers all over the world.
First, let us learn about each of their features, and then at the end, I will provide a price comparison table. But remember, the price cannot be a priority when choosing a hosting provider for healthcare purposes.
So let’s get into it.
One of the best hosting provider that is HIPAA compliant is Atlantic.net. It is well-known for its state of the art IT security and has been noted as the most secured HIPAA Compliant Hosting service when audited. In fact, the company is certified with all sorts of security parameters such as GDPR, SOC2, SOC3, and HITECH Compliance.
Atlantic ensures high security with Multifactor authentication through an app to restrict unauthorized access of data, and encrypted VPN.
It also offers the following:
- Dedicated Servers
- Private and Hybrid hosting
- Offsite backups
- 24/7 Security Monitoring
Atlantic provides a 100% up-time guarantee and ultra-fast data processing speeds at all times.
2. Liquid Web
Liquid Web is often considered the best HIPAA compliant hosting provider due to its high-quality service and a competitive price. The company was audited by a third-party firm, UHY LLP, who confirmed the HIPAA compliance of the company.
Liquid Web offers the following:
- Self-owned Core Data Centers
- 24/7 support
- Offsite backup system
- Full administrative safeguard
It provides fully managed servers and has its own HIPAA experts to ensure proper infrastructure to be a top-quality HIPAA compliant hosting provider.
Currently, Liquid Web provides services in over 150 countries.
3. Amazon Web Services (AWS)
Is AWS HIPAA Compliant ?
Amazon Web Services is a very popular cloud hosting provider. But unlike most other cloud servers, AWS is HIPAA compliant. In fact, the security level it provides can outdo most other hosting providers out there.
Now, cloud servers cannot be audited for HIPAA compliance but AWS incorporates FedRAMP and NIST 800-53, which are higher security standards than those required to be HIPAA compliant. NIST confirmed that AWS is well compliant with HIPAA through their guideline.
Amazon usually provides a lot of services and features, but they have outlined the ones that they allow you to use when you sign a BAA for HIPAA compliance.
With high security for administrative access and fully secured database, AWS ensures fast servers due to its huge pool of data centers; over 175 globally.
Plus, AWS experts are happy to set up your cloud servers for you and will help monitor data protection.
Rackspace is a highly trusted hosting provider to several healthcare service providers, with over 2500 healthcare organizations using their services.
It is fully HIPAA compliant and is specialized to serve healthcare services with highly secured servers for patient handling.
Some of the great services It offers are:
- Fulling managed hosting
- Hybrid or multi-cloud services
- In-house HIPAA exports
- Cloud-based patient engagement tools
Rackspace provides 24/7 support, security, and monitoring. Plus it gives added benefits besides hosting services such as consolidated data centers for simplified infrastructure, providers, payers, and life sciences, and experts to help you analyze patient data to understand your business performance.
Armor is a cloud hosting provider that offers secured HIPAA compliant hosting service which is excelling over the years. The company is especially popular due to its real-time monitoring 24/7.
Along with secured managed hosting, Armor also provides log and data management services with enhanced threat detection and a highly protected firewall.
It also provides benefits such as:
- 24/7 support
- In-house cyber-security experts
- Risk-management enhanced
- Full analytics on performance
Armor will provide you with proof of its HIPAA compliance even before you decide to take their service so that you can be sure of the security. Plus it has a great backup feature to avoid data loss at all costs.
LightEdge is often considered the best cloud-based HIPAA compliant provider out there. It provides full flexibility, security, and control needed to meet the requirements to be HIPAA compliant.
The company aims at increasing your ease of data management while maintaining top security. They make sure a CPA firm audits them annually to confirm HIPAA compliance.
- Expert assistance whenever required
- Data Center specialized for health care database and security
- Regular risk detection assessment
- Managed security solutions
LightEdge allows dynamic changes for any unexpected requirements by health centers and is reliable with their commitments.
7. HIPAA Vault
As the name suggests, HIPAA Vault is a managed hosting provider created just to provide HIPAA compliant hosting service.
Its managed HIPAA compliant cloud solutions ensure constant monitoring and secured maintenance of servers. It makes sure you don’t have to deal with complications and helps you set up your server in the most secure way.
It provides more benefits such as:
- Up-to-date security system
- Isolated Web Server with quality web application firewall
- Highly secured and efficient Data Centers
- Live 24/7 Support
The company is well-known for less-than-15 minutes response times to critical alerts and 90% first call resolutions.
Now, let us look at a price comparison table for these hosting providers.
Price Comparison of HIPAA Compliant Hosting Providers
**All the plans mentioned here are possible starting monthly plans (unless mentioned otherwise), and can vary based on adding extra services.
|Hosting Provider||HIPAA Hosting Pricing Plans|
|Liquid Web||$383 – Basic HIPAA hosting for Windows|
$958 – Advanced managed HIPAA compliant multiple dedicated servers
|Atlantic.net||$500 – Entry-level HIPAA compliant cloud hosting|
$514 – High-memory HIPAA compliant cloud hosting
$99.99 – Cloud server management
$799 – Entry-level HIPAA compliant dedicated server
$2399 High-Memory HIPAA Compliant Dedicated Server
|Amazon Web Services||Pay-as-you-go or Tier based payment based on usage, no fixed cost. |
Here’s where you can calculate cost based on your requirements:
Amazon web services pricing
|Rackspace||Cost varies based on your requirements. You need to request a quote.|
Request a quote here
|Armor||Cost varies based on your requirements. You need to request a quote.|
Request a quote here
|LightEdge||Cost varies based on your requirements. You need to request a quote.|
Request a quote here
|HIPAA Vault||$599 – Managed Hosting for Windows (monthly fee with 12-month term)|
$699 – Managed Hosting for Windows (monthly fee with no term)
AS you can see, the pricing vary, however, Liquid Web is the most trusted one with cost-effective plans, whereas AWS is the most flexible service, ideal for any small to medium healthcare centers.
However, HIPAA Vault is emerging quickly in terms of preference by most Healthcare centers due to easier collaboration and dedicated hosting services for the healthcare industry.
As I mentioned earlier, the cost should never be the main priority when choosing the right hosting provider for your healthcare center.
It’s best to communicate directly with the customer care of the hosting provider to understand if they are the right service for you.
The list of Hosting Providers here are all HIPAA compliant and have made their mark out there as preferred hosting providers in the healthcare industry. But you should take time and analyze the features and quality each one provides before choosing the one that is the right fit for you.
Is WordPress HIPAA compliant ?
WordPress on its own is not HIPAA compliant. There are a lot of security and technical safeguards to follow to make it HIPAA compliant. WordPress also doesn’t have any mention of BAA on their website, it is clear that WordPress doesn’t come as HIPAA compliant from start. But if you are keen on using WordPress for storing e-PHI and making it HIPAA compliant then you can follow this guide get started
If you are using WordPress, then here’s an useful guide to make your WordPress HIPAA compliant.
If you are currently unhappy with your hosting provider, then I suggest you take a look at the ones in this article.
And do let us know, any notable experience you had with your current hosting provider, in the comment section.