|Notice of HIPAA Privacy Practices
Notice of HIPAA Privacy Practices
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is a federal program that requires all medical records and other individually identifiable health information used or disclosed by us in any form, whether electronically, on paper or orally are kept properly confidential. This act gives you, the patient, the right to understand and control how your personal health information ("PHI") is used. HIPAA provides penalties for covered entities that misuse personal health information.
As required by HIPAA, we prepared this explanation of how we are to maintain the privacy of your health information and how we may disclose your personal information.
We may use and disclose your medical records only for each of the following purposes: Treatment, payment and health care operation.
We may contact you, by phone or in writing, to provide reminders or information about treatment alternatives or other health-related services.
- Treatment means providing, coordinating, or managing health care and related services by one or more healthcare providers. An example of this would include referring you to a retina specialist.
- Payment means such activities as obtaining reimbursement for services, confirming coverage, billing or collection activities and utilization review.
- Health Care Operations include business aspects of running our practices, such as conducting quality assessments and improving activities, auditing functions, cost management analysis, and customer service.
- The practice may also disclose your PHI for law enforcement and other legitimate reasons although we shall do our best to assure its continued confidentiality to the extent possible.
- We will not disclose your health information without your written authorization, except as described in this notice.
You may have the following rights with respect to your PHI.
If you have paid for services "out of pocket", in full, and you request that we not disclose PHI related solely to those services to a health plan, we will accommodate your request, except where we are required by law to make a disclosure.
- The right to request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of PHI, including those related to disclosures of family members, other relatives, close personal friends, or any other person identified by you.
- The right to reasonable requests to receive confidential communications of Protected Health Information by alternative means or at alternative locations.
- The right to inspect and copy your PHI.
- The right to amend your PHI.
- The right to receive an accounting of disclosures of your PHI.
- The right to obtain a paper copy of this notice from us upon request.
- The right to be advised if your unprotected PHI is intentionally or unintentionally disclosed.
We are required by law to maintain the privacy of your Protected Health Information and to provide you the notice of our legal duties and our privacy practice with respect to PHI.
This notice is effective as of September 1, 2013 and it is our intention to abide by the terms of the Notice of Privacy Practices and HIPAA regulations currently in effect. We reserve the right to change the terms of our Notice of Privacy Practices and to make the new notice provision effective for all PHI that we maintain. We will post and you may request a written copy of the revised Notice of Privacy from our office.
You have recourse if you feel that your protections have been violated by our office. You have the right to file a formal, written complaint with the office and with the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Civil Rights. We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.