Telemedicine HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices

 

Effective: April 18, 2020

 

 

THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW YOUR MEDICAL INFORMATION MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.

 

 

 

This Telemedicine HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices (the "Notice") is being provided to you, by the independent Providers and the Medical Group, as that entity or its subsidiaries and affiliated entities may be formed and incorporated in your state, and the employees and practitioners that work at such entity and/or for such practices (collectively referred to herein as “We” or “Our”). It contains important information regarding your medical information. You also have the right to receive a paper copy of this Notice and may ask us to give you a copy of this Notice at any time. If you received this Notice electronically, you are still entitled to a paper copy of this Notice upon your request. You can request a paper copy of our current Notice from the Privacy Officer at (202) 743-3767 or you can access it on AcneAlly’s website at http://www.acneally.com/privacy-practices.

 

 

 

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 ("HIPAA") imposes numerous requirements on health care practices such as ours, defined as Covered Entities, regarding how certain individually identifiable health information – known as protected health information (“PHI”) – may be used and disclosed. We understand that medical information about you and your health is personal. We are committed to protecting medical information about you and will use it to the minimum necessary to accomplish the intended purpose of the use, disclosure or request of it. As required by law, this notice provides you with information about your rights and our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to the privacy of PHI. This notice also discusses the uses and disclosures we will make of your PHI. We must comply with the provisions of this notice as currently in effect, although we reserve the right to change the terms of this notice from time to time and to make the revised notice effective for all PHI we maintain.

 

 

 

PERMITTED USES AND DISCLOSURES

 

 

We can use or disclose your PHI for purposes of treatment, payment, and health care operations. For each of these categories of uses and disclosures, we have provided a description and examples below. However, not every particular use or disclosure in every category will necessarily be listed.

 

 

 

·      “Treatment” means the provision, coordination, or management of your health care, including consultations between health care providers, including hospital, and other long-term care providers, relating to your care and referrals for health care from one health care provider to another. For example, an attending physician at the skilled nursing facility where you reside treating you for diabetes may need to know if you have a psychiatric disorder or are taking psychotropic medications because such disorders or medications may have disease-disease or drug-disease interactions with diabetes. In addition, the practitioner may need to contact another provider for purposes of treating a psychiatric disorder or condition when our providers are not available to provide your care.

 

 

 

·      “Payment” means the activities we undertake to obtain reimbursement for the health care provided to you, including billing, claims management, determinations of eligibility and coverage, collections, case management, and other utilization review activities. For example, we may need to provide PHI to your insurance carrier or a party financially responsible for your care in order to determine whether the proposed course of treatment will be covered, to determine appropriate reimbursement, or to obtain payment. Federal or state law may require us to obtain a written release from you prior to disclosing certain specially protected PHI for payment purposes, and we will ask you to sign a release when necessary under applicable law.

 

 

 

·      “Health Care Operations” means the support functions for our practice and providers, related to referral, facilitating the telemedicine connection and visit, care coordination, compliance reviews, compliance programs, treatment and payment, quality assurance activities, receiving and responding to patient comments and complaints, provider training, audits, business planning, development, management, legal, and administrative activities. For example, we may use your PHI to evaluate the performance of our provider staff when caring for you. We may also combine PHI about many patients to make clinical qualitative review decisions or decide what additional services we should offer, what services are not needed, and whether certain treatments are effective. We may also disclose PHI for review and educational purposes. In addition, we may remove, or de-identify, information that identifies you so that others can use the de-identified information to study health care, conduct research, collect population health data, and determine methods for improved health care delivery without learning who you are.

 

 

 

OTHER USES AND DISCLOSURES OF PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION

 

 

We may also use your PHI in the following ways:

 

 

 

·      To provide appointment reminders and schedule your availability with staff or affiliates for your treatment.

 

·      To tell you about or recommend possible treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.

 

·      To your family, personal representative, power of attorney, guardian, or any other individual identified by you to the extent directly related to such person’s involvement in your care or the payment for your care. We may use or disclose your PHI to notify, or assist in the notification of, a family member, a personal representative, or another person responsible for your care, of your general condition or death. If you are available, we will give you an opportunity to object to these disclosures, and we will not make these disclosures if you object. If you are not available, incapacitated or unable to make informed consent decisions about your health care we will determine whether a disclosure to your family or personal representative is permitted or required by law, in your best interests, taking into account the circumstances, and act based upon our professional judgment.

 

·      When permitted by law, we may coordinate our uses and disclosures of PHI with public or private entities authorized by law or by charter to assist in disaster relief efforts.

 

·      We will allow your family and friends to act on your behalf to pick-up filled prescriptions and similar forms of PHI, when we determine, in our professional judgment, that it is in your best interest to make such disclosures.

 

·      We may use or disclose your PHI for research purposes, subject to the requirements of applicable law. For example, a research project may involve comparisons of the health and recovery of all patients who received a particular medication. All research projects are subject to a special approval process which balances research needs with a patient’s need for privacy. When required, we will obtain a written authorization from you prior to using your PHI for research.

 

·      In certain cases, we will provide your information to contractors, agents and other parties who need the information in order to perform a service for us (“Business Associates”), including, without limitation, obtaining payment for health care services, technology services providers, or carrying out other business operations. In those situations, PHI will be provided to those contractors, agents and other parties as is needed to perform their contracted tasks. Business Associates are required to enter into an agreement maintaining the privacy of the protected health information released to them under certain terms and conditions required of them by state and federal law.

 

·      We may share your information with an insurance company, law firm or risk management organization in order to maintain professional advice about how to manage risk and legal liability, including insurance or legal claims. However, in these situations, we require third parties to provide us with assurances that they will safeguard your information under terms and conditions required by applicable state and federal law.

 

·      We will use or disclose PHI about you when required to do so by applicable law, only to the extent necessary to meet such a requirement.

 

·      In accordance with applicable law, we may disclose your PHI to your employer if we are retained to conduct an evaluation of whether you have a work-related illness or injury. You will be notified of these disclosures by your employer or the provider as required by applicable law.

 

·      Incidental uses and disclosures of PHI sometimes occur and are not considered to be a violation of your rights. Incidental uses and disclosures are by-products of otherwise permitted uses or disclosures which are limited in nature and cannot be reasonably prevented.

 

 

 

SPECIAL SITUATIONS

 

 

Subject to the requirements of applicable law, we will make the following uses and disclosures of your PHI:

 

 

 

·      Involuntary patients: Information regarding patients who are being treated involuntarily, pursuant to law, will be shared with other treatment providers, legal entities, third party payors and others, as necessary to provide the care and management coordination needed in compliance with state and federal law.

 

·      Emergencies: In life threatening emergencies, we will disclose information necessary to avoid serious harm or death.

 

·      Organ and Tissue Donation. If you are an organ donor, we may release PHI to organizations that handle organ procurement or transplantation as necessary to facilitate organ or tissue donation and transplantation.