Notice of Privacy Practices
This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully. If you have any questions about this notice, please contact us at 1-877-786-7884.
This Notice of Privacy Practices describes how we may use and disclose your protected health information to carry out treatment, payment or health care operations and for other purposes that are permitted or required by law. It also describes your rights to access and control your protected health information. “Protected health information” is information about you, including demographic information, that may identify you and that relates to your past, present or future physical or mental health or condition and related health care services.
We are required to abide by the terms of this Notice or Privacy Practices. We may change the terms of our notice, at any time. The new notice will be effective for all protected health information that we maintain at that time. Upon your request, we will provide you with any revised Notice of Privacy Practices by calling the office and requesting that a revised copy be sent to you in the mail.
Understanding Your Health Record / Information
Each time you visit a healthcare provider, a record of your visit is made. Typically, this record contains your symptoms, examination and test results, diagnoses, treatment, and a plan for future care or treatment. This information, often referred to as your health or medical record, serves as a:
- basis for planning your care and treatment
- means of communication among the many health professionals who contribute to your care
- legal document describing the care you received
- means by which you or a third-party payer can verify that services billed were actually provided
- source of data for medical research
- source of information for public health officials charged with improving the health of the nation
- source of data for facility planning and marketing
- a tool with which we can assess and continually work to improve the care we render and the outcomes we achieve
Understanding what is in your record and how your health information is used helps you to:
- ensure its accuracy
- better understand who. what, when, where, and why others may access your health information
- make more informed decisions when authorizing disclosure to others
Your Health Information Rights
Although your health record is the physical property of the healthcare practitioner or facility that compiled it, the information belongs to you. You have the right to:
- request a restriction on certain uses and disclosures of your information
- request that protected health information not be released to your health insurer for services you elect to pay for out of pocket
- obtain a paper copy of the notice of information practices upon request
- inspect and obtain a copy of your health record in the form and format requested within 30 days of the request
- amend your health record
- obtain an accounting of disclosures of your health information
- request communications of your health information by alternative means or at alternative locations
- revoke our authorization to use or disclose health information except to the extent that action has already been taken
This organization is required to:
- maintain the privacy of your health information
- provide you with a notice as to our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to information we collect and maintain about you
- abide by the terms of this notice
- notify you if we are unable to agree to a requested restriction
- accommodate reasonable requests you may have to communicate health information by alternative means or at alternative locations
- notify you in the event of a breach of the privacy or security of your protected health information
We will not use or disclose your health information without your authorization, except as described in this notice. If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you can file a complaint with our Privacy Officer at 877-786-7884 or with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. There will be no retaliation for filing a complaint.
Examples of Disclosures for Treatment, Payment and Health Operations
We will use your health information for treatment. For example: Information obtained by a physician or other member of your healthcare team will be recorded in your record and used to determine the course of treatment that should work best for you. We may provide your physician or a subsequent healthcare provider with copies of various reports that should assist him or her in treating you.
We will use your health information for payment. For example: A bill may be sent to you or a third-party payer. The information on or accompanying the bill may include information that identifies you, as well as your diagnosis, procedures, and supplies used.
We will use your health information for regular health operations. For example: members of our quality improvement team may use information in your health records to assess the care and outcomes in your case and others like it. This information will then be used in an effort to continually improve the quality and effectiveness of the healthcare and service we provide.
Business associates: There are some services provided in our organization through contacts with business associates. An example would be our billing service. When these services are contracted, we may disclose your health information to our business associate so that they can perform the job we’ve asked them to do and your third-party payer for services rendered. To protect your health information, however, we require the business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.
Individuals involved in your care or payment for your care: We may release protected health information about you to a friend or family member who you have listed as a contact involved in you medical care. Additionally, we may give information to an individual who helps pay for your care.
Supply reminders: We may use and disclose you protected health information to contact you about your supply needs and provide supply reminders about an item that is currently prescribed to you.
As required by law: We will use and disclose protected health information about you when required to do so by federal, state, or local law.
Decedents: We may disclose protected health information to funeral directors as needed, and to a coroner or medical examiner as authorized by law.
Organ procurement organizations: Consistent with applicable law, we may disclose health Information to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement, banking, or transplantation of organs for the purpose of tissue donation and transplant.
Marketing: We may contact you to provide appointment reminders or information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.
Workers compensation: We may disclose health information to the extent authorized by and to the extent necessary to comply with laws relating to workers compensation or other similar programs established by law.
Public health: We may disclose protected health information about you for public health activities. Examples of these include notification for product recalls or reporting problems about products.
Law enforcement: We may disclose health information for law enforcement purposes as required by law or in response to a valid subpoena.
Essential government functions: We may disclose protected health information for certain government functions. For example, assuring proper execution of a military mission, conducting intelligence and other national security activities authorized by law, providing protective services to the President, and determining eligibility for or conducting enrollment in certain government benefit programs.
Victims of abuse, neglect or domestic violence: We may disclose your protected health information if we reasonably believe you are a victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence to a government authority authorized by law to receive these reports
Health oversight activities: We may disclose your protected health information to be released to a health oversight agency for purposes of legally authorized health oversight activities, such as audits and investigations necessary for oversight of the health care system and government benefits programs.
Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information Requiring Your Authorization
Marketing: We must obtain your permission prior to using your protected health information for purposes that are considered marketing under HIPAA privacy rules. For example, if we were to receive financial remuneration from third parties in exchange for communicating with you about certain products, services, treatments, therapies, health care providers, settings of care, case management and care coordination, we must obtain your authorization prior to disclosing any protected health information.
Sale of protected health information: We will not participate in any sales of protected health information without your written authorization.