NU Online News Service, Sept. 24, 11:41 a.m. – BDO Seidman L.L.P., Chicago, says its Healthcare Advisory Services Group will be setting up a unit to help employer-sponsored health plans comply with the privacy, data standardization and security requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.

Most employers with health plans that serve 50 or more employees must meet the new HIPAA requirements by April 2003.

Employers subject to the requirements should start planning now, because setting up a compliance program takes at least 60 days, BDO Seidman says.

The firm says its HIPAA services will include an analysis of what an employer needs to do to comply with HIPAA; compliance planning; help with implementation; and help with organizing a system to monitor compliance.