THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.
Under the Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), we are required by law to maintain the privacy of protected health information (PHI), to provide individuals with notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to PHI, and to notify affected individuals following a breach of unsecured PHI. We must follow the privacy practices that are described in this Notice while it is in effect. This Notice takes effect November 2017, and will remain in effect until we replace it.
We reserve the right to change our privacy practices and the terms of this Notice at any time, provided such changes are permitted by applicable law, and to make new Notice provisions effective for all protected health information that we maintain. In the event of a significant change in our privacy practices, we will change this Notice and post the new Notice clearly and prominently at our practice location, and we will provide copies of the new Notice upon request.
You may request a copy of our Notice at any time. For more information about our privacy practices, or for additional copies of this Notice, please contact us using the information listed at the end of this Notice.
HOW WE MAY USE AND DISCLOSE HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU
We will use and disclose your PHI for different purposes, including treatment, payment, and health care operations. Some information, such as HIV-related information, genetic information, alcohol and/or substance abuse records, and mental health records may be entitled to special confidentiality protections under applicable state or federal law. We will abide by these special protections as they pertain to applicable cases involving these types of records.
Following are examples of the types of uses and disclosures of your PHI that may occur. These examples are not meant to be exhaustive, but to describe the types of uses and disclosures that maybe made by our office.
Treatment. We may use and disclose your PHI to provide, coordinate or manage your healthcare and any related services. This includes the coordination or management of your health care with a third party. For example, we would disclose your PHI, as necessary, to a home health agency that provides care to you. We will also disclose PHI to other physicians who may be treating you. For example, your PHI may be provided to a physician to whom you have been referred to ensure that the physician has the necessary information to diagnose or treat you. In addition, we may disclose your PHI from time to time to another physician or health care provider (e.g., a specialist or laboratory) who, at the request of your physician, becomes involved in your care by providing assistance with your health care diagnosis or treatment to your physician.
Payment. We may use and disclose your PHI to obtain reimbursement for the treatment and services you receive from us or another entity involved with your care. Payment activities include billing, collections, claims management, and determinations of eligibility and coverage to obtain payment from you, an insurance company, or another third party. For example, we may send claims to your dental health plan containing certain health information.
Healthcare Operations. We may use or disclose, as needed, your PHI in order to conduct certain business and operational activities. These activities include, but are not limited to, quality assessment activities, employee review activities, training of students, licensing, and conducting or arranging for other business activities. For example, we may use a sign-in sheet at the registration desk where you will be asked to sign your name. We may also call you by name in the waiting room when your doctor is ready to see you. We may use or disclose your protected health information, as necessary, to contact you by telephone, text or mail to remind you of your appointment. We will share your PHI with third party “business associates” that perform various activities (e.g., billing, transcription services) for the practice. Whenever an arrangement between our office and a business associate involves the use or disclosure of your PHI, we will have a written contract that contains terms that will protect the privacy of your PHI.
Marketing: We may use your PHI to contact you with information about treatment alternatives that may be of interest to you. We may disclose your PHI to a business associate to assist us in these activities. We may also use and disclose your PHI for other marketing activities. For example, your name and address may be used to send you a newsletter about our practice and the services we offer. We may also send you information about products or services that we believe may be beneficial to you. You may contact us to request that these materials not be sent to you.
Individuals Involved in Your Care or Payment for Your Care. We may disclose your PHI to your family or friends or any other individual identified by you when they are involved in your care or in the payment for your care. Additionally, we may disclose information about you to a patient representative. If a person has the authority by law to make health care decisions for you, we will treat that patient representative the same way we would treat you with respect to your PHI.
Disaster Relief. We may use or disclose your PHI to assist in disaster relief efforts.
Required by Law. We may use or disclose your PHI when we are required to do so by law. For example, we must disclose your PHI to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services upon request for purposes of determining whether we are in compliance with federal privacy laws. We may disclose your PHI when authorized by workers’ compensation or similar laws.
Public Health Activities. We may disclose your PHI for public health activities, including disclosures to:
Prevent or control disease, injury or disability;
Report child abuse or neglect;
Report reactions to medications or problems with products or devices;
Notify a person of a recall, repair, or replacement of products or devices;
Notify a person who may have been exposed to a disease or condition; or
Notify the appropriate government authority if we believe a patient has been the victim of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence.
National Security. We may disclose to military authorities the PHI of Armed Forces personnel under certain circumstances. We may disclose to authorized federal officials PHI required for lawful intelligence, counterintelligence, and other national security activities.
Food and Drug Administration: We may disclose your PHI to a person or company required by the Food and Drug Administration to report adverse events, product defects or problems, biologic product deviations; to track products; to enable product recalls; to make repairs or replacements; or to conduct post marketing surveillance, as required.
Secretary of HHS. We will disclose your PHI to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services when required to investigate or determine compliance with HIPAA.
Worker’s Compensation. We may disclose your PHI to the extent authorized by and to the extent necessary to comply with laws relating to worker’s compensation or other similar programs established by law.
Law Enforcement. We may disclose PHI to a law enforcement official concerning the PHI of a suspect, fugitive, material witness, crime victim or missing person. We may disclose the PHI of an inmate or other person in lawful custody to a law enforcement official or correctional institution under certain circumstances. We may disclose PHI where necessary to assist law enforcement officials to capture an individual who has admitted to participation in a crime or has escaped from lawful custody.
Health Oversight Activities. We may disclose your PHI to an oversight agency for activities authorized by law. These oversight activities include audits, investigations, inspections, and credentialing, as necessary for licensure and for the government to monitor the health care system, government programs, and compliance with civil rights laws.
Judicial and Administrative Proceedings. If you are involved in a lawsuit or a dispute, we may disclose your PHI in response to a court or administrative order. We may also disclose PHI about you in response to a subpoena, discovery request, or other lawful process instituted by someone else involved in the dispute, but only if efforts have been made, either by the requesting party or us, to tell you about the request or to obtain an order protecting the information requested.
Research. We may disclose your PHI to researchers when their research has been approved by an institutional review board or privacy board that has reviewed the research proposal and established protocols to ensure the privacy of your information.
Coroners, Medical Examiners, and Funeral Directors. We may release your PHI to a coroner or medical examiner. This may be necessary, for example, to identify a deceased person or determine the cause of death. We may also disclose PHI to funeral directors consistent with applicable law to enable them to carry out their duties.
Fundraising. We may contact you to provide you with information about our sponsored activities, including fundraising programs, as permitted by applicable law. If you do not wish to receive such information from us, you may opt out of receiving the communications.
Other Uses and Disclosures of PHI
Your authorization is required, with a few exceptions, for disclosure of psychotherapy notes, use or disclosure of PHI for marketing, and for the sale of PHI. We will also obtain your written authorization before using or disclosing your PHI for purposes other than those provided for in this Notice (or as otherwise permitted or required by law). You may revoke an authorization in writing at any time. Upon receipt of the written revocation, we will stop using or disclosing your PHI, except to the extent that we have already taken action in reliance on the authorization.
Your Health Information Rights
Access. You have the right to look at or get copies of your PHI, with limited exceptions. You must make the request in writing. You may obtain a form to request access by using the contact information listed at the end of this Notice. You may also request access by sending us a letter to the address at the end of this Notice. If you request information that we maintain on paper, we may provide photocopies. If you request information that we maintain electronically, you have the right to an electronic copy. We will use the form and format you request if readily producible. We will charge you a reasonable cost-based fee for the cost of supplies and labor of copying, and for postage if you want copies mailed to you. Contact us using the information listed at the end of this Notice for an explanation of our fee structure.
If you are denied a request for access, you have the right to have the denial reviewed in accordance with the requirements of applicable law.
Disclosure Accounting. With the exception of certain disclosures, you have the right to receive an accounting of disclosures of your PHI in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. To request an accounting of disclosures of your PHI, you must submit your request in writing to the Privacy Official. If you request this accounting more than once in a 12- month period, we may charge you a reasonable, cost-based fee for responding to the additional requests.
Right to Request a Restriction. You have the right to request additional restrictions on our use or disclosure of your PHI by submitting a written request to the Privacy Official. Your written request must include (1) what information you want to limit, (2) whether you want to limit our use, disclosure or both, and (3) to whom you want the limits to apply. We are not required to agree to your request except in the case where the disclosure is to a health plan for purposes of carrying out payment or health care operations, and the information pertains solely to a health care item or service for which you, or a person on your behalf (other than the health plan), has paid our practice in full.
Alternative Communication. You have the right to request that we communicate with you about your PHI by alternative means or at alternative locations. You must make your request in writing. Your request must specify the alternative means or location, and provide satisfactory explanation of how payments will be handled under the alternative means or location you request. We will accommodate all reasonable requests. However, if we are unable to contact you using the ways or locations you have requested we may contact you using the information we have.
Amendment. You have the right to request that we amend your PHI circumstances. If we agree to your request, we will amend your record(s) and notify you of such. If we deny your request for an amendment, we will provide you with a written explanation of why we denied it and explain your rights.
Right to Notification of a Breach. You will receive notifications of breaches of your unsecured PHI as required by law.
Electronic Notice. You may receive a paper copy of this Notice upon request, even if you have agreed to receive this Notice electronically on our Web site or by electronic mail (e-mail).
Questions and Complaints
If you want more information about our privacy practices or have questions or concerns, please contact us.
If you are concerned that we may have violated your privacy rights, or if you disagree with a decision we made about access to your PHI or in response to a request you made to amend or restrict the use or disclosure of your PHI or to have us communicate with you by alternative means or at alternative locations, you may complain to us using the contact information listed at the end of this Notice. You also may submit a written complaint to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. We will provide you with the address to file your complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services upon request.
We support your right to the privacy of your PHI. We 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.
Our Privacy Official: Marina Shurova
Telephone: (813) 908-3636 Fax: (813) 908-7668
Address: 17521 N. Dale Mabry Hwy, Lutz, FL 33548
This material is educational only, does not constitute legal advice, and covers only federal, not state, law. Changes in applicable laws or regulations may require revision.
© 2010, 2013 American Dental Association. All Rights Reserved.