Health Care Laws, Regulations and Standards

Topics: Health care, Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, Health care provider Pages: 3 (812 words) Published: December 12, 2010
Running Head: Health care

Health Care Laws, Regulations and Standards

Christina Brown

Kaplan University

IT128-01 Health Informatics I

Professor Botts

October 26, 2010

Health Care Laws, Regulations and Standards

Its time for your annual check-up and the receptionist hands you a clip board with several sheets of paper requiring your personal information. The papers in it self seems harmless and the information appears generic, but thousand of patients withhold information that could be helpful to their treatment in fear of breach of confidentiality. One of the main questions people hesitate to include within a Legal Health Record (LHR) is their social security number, which is considered a patient-identifier. Many Americans strive hard to keep their social security numbers from being made public or used for purposes other then intended. Various patients worry about volunteering too much information about health issues and concerns for fear that this information will be used to predetermine health insurance coverage, an employer hiring or firing them based on an illness or genetic condition or any number reasons stemming from fear of breach of confidentiality. Patients need to be reassured that health information shared with a medical professional will remain confidential.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) issued the Privacy Rule to implement the requirement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (“HIPAA”) (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, 2009) . HIPAA set federal regulations and standards to protect patient information from being disclosed for purposes other then to treat and care for the patient. Although HIPAA is a comprehensive federal regulation used to protect private health information each organization must be knowledgeable of their local state laws to ensure any regulations not covered under HIPAA are covered within their respectful state laws. Each state has...
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