Notice of Privacy Practices
We will keep your health information confidential, using it only for the following purposes:
Treatment: We may use your health information to provide you with our professional services. We have established “minimum necessary or need to know” standards that limit various staff members’ access to your health information according to their primary job functions. Everyone on our staff is required to sign a confidentiality statement.
Disclosure: We may disclose and/or share your healthcare information with other health care professionals who provide treatment and/or service to you. These professionals will have a privacy and confidentiality policy like this one. Health information about you may also be disclosed to your family, friends and/or other persons you choose to involve in your care, only if you agree that we may do so.
Payment: We may use and disclose your health information to seek payment for services we provide to you. This disclosure involves our business office staff and may include insurance organizations or other businesses that may become involved in the process of mailing statements and/or collecting unpaid balances.
Emergencies: We may use or disclose your health information to notify, or assist in the notification of a family member or anyone responsible for your care, in case of any emergency involving your care, your location, your general condition or death. If at all possible we will provide you with an opportunity to object to this use or disclosure. Under emergency conditions or if you are incapacitated we will use our professional judgment to disclose only that information directly relevant to your care.
Healthcare Operations: We will use and disclose your health information to keep our practice operable. Examples of personnel who may have access to this information include, but are not limited to, our medical records staff, outside health or management reviewers and individuals performing similar activities.
Required by Law: We may use or disclose your health information when we are required to do so by law. (Court or administrative orders, subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process.) We will use and disclose your information when requested by national security, intelligence and other State and Federal officials and/or if you are an inmate or otherwise under the custody of law enforcement.
Abuse or Neglect: We may disclose your health information to appropriate authorities if we reasonably believe that you are a possible victim of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence or the possible victim of other crimes. This information will be disclosed only to the extent necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health or safety or that of others.
Public Health Responsibilities: We will disclose your health care information to report problems with products, reactions to medications, product recalls, disease/infection exposure and to prevent and control disease, injury and/or disability.
National Security: The health information of Armed Forces personnel may be disclosed to military authorities under certain circumstances. If the information is required for lawful intelligence, counterintelligence or other national security activities, we may disclose it to authorized federal official.
Appointment Reminders: We may use or disclose your health information to provide you with appointment reminders, including, but not limited to, voicemail messages, postcards or letters.
YOUR PRIVACY RIGHTS AS OUR PATIENT
Access: Upon written request, you have the right to inspect and get copies of your health information (and that of an individual for whom you are a legal guardian.) There will be some limited exceptions. If you wish to examine your health information, you will need to submit a written request to our Privacy Officer.
Amendment: You have the right to amend your healthcare information, if you feel it is inaccurate or incomplete. Your request must be in writing and must include an explanation of why the information should be amended. Under certain circumstances, your request may be denied.
Authorization for Disclosure: If you wish to authorize disclosure of your health information for reasons other than treatment, payment, or operations, you must do so in writing. The written authorization must include specific information about who is authorized to receive your health care information, and what information they are authorized to receive. (See form HIPAA Authorization for Disclosure).
Non-routine Disclosures: You have the right to receive a list of non-routine disclosures we have made of your health care information. (When we make a routine disclosure of your information to a professional for treatment and/or payment purposes, we do not keep a record of routine disclosures: therefore these are not available.) You have the right to a list of instances in which we, or our business associates, disclosed information without your authorization for reasons other than treatment, payment or healthcare operations.
Restrictions: You have the right to request that we place additional restrictions on our use or disclosure of your health information. Please contact our Privacy Officer if you want to further restrict access to your health care information. This request must be submitted in writing.
QUESTIONS AND COMPLAINTS
You have the right to file a complaint with us if you feel we have not complied with our Privacy Policies. Your written complaint should be directed to our Privacy Officer. We support your right to the privacy of your information and will not retaliate in any way if you choose to file a complaint with us or with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.