But there may be a work around to this, although it requires a little extra work on your part. Instead of setting a look-a-like audience for digital marketing, you could analyze your patient data on your own by using a spreadsheet, and input ONLY the demographics that you identified as your target audience into your marketing tools. For instance, if you find that most of your patients are males between the ages of 45 – 60, you can set this demographic as your target audience without having to filter any PHI through the software.
*When using a spreadsheet for PHI, you must ensure the spreadsheet software is HIPAA compliant, and you have a signed business associate agreement (BAA) with the software provider. Some HIPAA compliant spreadsheet providers include Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets, but they are ONLY considered HIPAA compliant if you have a BAA signed with Microsoft or Google before their use.