Who Does Your Health Information Affect?

Your health information can affect many people. Some family members or employers may have access to some or all of your information. It is important to know their role in knowing your health records.

You: The Privacy Rule gives you the right to inspect, review, and receive a copy of your medical records and billing records that are held by health plans and health care providers covered by the Privacy Rule.

Your Employer: Your employer can ask you for a doctor's note or other health information if they need the information for sick leave, worker's compensation, wellness programs, or health insurance.

However, if your employer asks your healthcare provider directly for information about you, your provider cannot give your employer the information without your authorization unless other laws require them to do so.

Your Personal Representative: Generally, an HIPAA-covered health care provider or health plan must allow your personal representative to inspect and receive a copy of protected health information about you that they maintain. To learn more about who can have access to your information, including children or deceased persons, and how to name a representative, go here.

Family and Friends: The Privacy Rule does not require a health care provider or health plan to share information with your family or friends unless they are your  personal representatives.

Court Orders: An HIPAA-covered health care provider or health plan may share your protected health information if it has a court order.

Subpoenas: An HIPAA-covered provider or plan may disclose information to a party issuing a subpoena only if the notification requirements of the Privacy Rule are met. Before responding to the subpoena, the provider or plan should receive evidence that there were reasonable efforts to notify the patient so that the person has a chance to object to the disclosure or seek a qualified protective order for the information from the court.

All information about your HIPAA rights and protected health records as well as frequently asked questions can be found on the US Department of Health & Human Services website.

If you suspect that your health records have not been handled and protected properly and your information is in the wrong hands, please contact an HIPAA violation law specialist. The attorneys at McShane & Brady are the only attorneys in the states of Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, and Nebraska with the experience and record of trying HIPAA cases. Call them today to learn about your rights under the law.

Source: hhs.gov.

For more information about your rights and protected information, go to hhs.gov.