As Required by the Privacy Regulations Created as a Result of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)
Our practice is dedicated to maintaining the privacy of your individually identifiable health information (IIHI). In conducting our business, we will create records regarding you and the treatment and services we provide to you. Patient health information includes information about your symptoms, test results, diagnosis, treatment and related medical information. Your health information also includes payments, billing and insurance information. We are required by law to maintain the confidentiality of health information that identifies you.
We may use and disclose your IIHI in the following ways:
Treatment: Our practice may use your IIHI to treat you. For example, we may ask you to have laboratory tests (such as blood or urine tests), and we may use the results to help us reach a diagnosis. We might use your IIHI in order to write a prescription for you, or we might disclose your IIHI to a pharmacy when we order a prescription for you. Many of the people who work for our practice – including, but not limited to, our doctors and nurses – may use or disclose your IIHI in order to treat you or to assist others in your treatment. Additionally, we may disclose your IIHI to others who may assist in your care, such as your spouse, children or parents.
Payment: Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI in order to bill and collect payment for the services and items you may receive from us. For example, we may contact your health insurer to certify that you are eligible for benefits (and for what range of benefits), and we may provide your insurer with details regarding your treatment to determine if your insurer will cover, or pay for, your treatment. We also may use and disclose your IIHI to obtain payment from third parties that may be responsible for such costs, such as family members. Also, we may use your IIHI to bill you directly for services and items.
Health Care Operations: Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to operate our business. As examples of the ways in which we may use and disclose your information for our operations; our practice may use your IIHI to evaluate the quality of care you received from us or to conduct cost-management and business planning activities for our practice.
Appointment Reminders: Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to contact you and remind you of an appointment. We may do this by way of an answering machine or one who answers your telephone.
Treatment Options: Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to inform you of potential treatment options or alternatives.
Health Related Benefits and Services: Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to inform you of health related benefits or services that may be of interest to you.
Release of Information to Family/Friends: Our practice may release your IIHI to a friend or family member that is involved in your care, or who assists in taking care of you. For example, a parent or guardian may ask that a babysitter take their child to the office for treatment. In this example, the babysitter may have access to this child’s medical information.
Disclosure Required By Law: Our practice will use and disclose your IIHI when we are required to do so by federal, state or local law.
Other: There are other unique scenarios in which we may use or disclose your IIHI. These are described in our complete statement of practices available at each of our locations.
YOUR RIGHTS REGARDING YOUR IIHI
Confidential Communications: You have the right to request that our practice communicate with you about your health and related issues in a particular manner or at a certain location. For instance, you may ask that we contact you at home, rather than work. Our practice will accommodate reasonable requests. You do not need to give a reason for your request.
You have additional rights regarding your IIHI. Those rights are outlined in detail in our complete Notice of Privacy Practices, which is available at all our locations.