Hipaa and Medical Records

Topics: Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, Health care, Health Pages: 2 (366 words) Published: July 13, 2009
Course: Law and Ethics in Medicine, HIT 105
Research Project #: 40903100
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 2003 changed the way that patients, practitioners and insurance companies viewed medical records. No longer would physician be able to choose the level of privacy they maintained for clients’ records. Patients became more aware of their rights and responsibilities toward their health records. This paper provides a brief synopsis of how HIPAA has affected access to medical records and its affect on medical offices and their employees. There are reasons that a person’s personal health information may be shared for purposes unrelated to their health care. The twelve national priority purposes under which this type of disclosure are permitted are: Required by Law

Public Health Activities
Victims of Abuse, Neglect or Domestic Violence
Health Oversight Activities
Judicial and Administrative Proceedings
Law Enforcement Purposes
Cadaveric Organ, Eye, or Tissue Donation
10.Serious Threat to Health or Safety
11.Essential Government Functions
12.Workers’ Compensation
(U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)
Patients must also receive a privacy notice from covered entities letting their clients know their standard policies on sharing a patient’s health information and how a patient can exercise their rights. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 2006) Covered entities include: doctors, clinics, nursing homes, health insurance plans and health care clearinghouses. According to HIPAA, “the individual has a fundamental right to receive adequate notice of how a covered entity may use and disclose” their personal health information. The notice must contain, in plain language, the following: How the covered entity may use and disclose protected health information about an individual. The individual’s rights with...

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