THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.
I. Who We Are
This Notice describes the privacy practices of [The Practice] (We or Us), and our employed doctors, nurses, employees and other personnel. This Notice applies to all services that are provided to you at our facility.
The Practice also participates in electronic health information exchange (HIE) networks, including “Hunterdon Health Connections” and “Jersey Health Connect”. This Notice describes how your authorized providers may access and share your health information electronically through an HIE network.
II. Our Privacy Obligations
We are required by law to maintain the privacy of your health information (“Protected Health Information” or “PHI”) and to provide you with this Notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to your PHI. When we use or disclose your PHI, we are required to abide by the terms of this Notice (or other notice in effect at the time of the use or disclosure).
III. How We May Use and Disclose Your PHI Without Your Written Authorization
We may use and/or disclose your PHI without your written authorization for the following purposes:
A. Treatment, Payment and Health Care Operations.
- Treatment. We may use and disclose your PHI to provide treatment and other health care services to you–for example, to diagnose and treat your injury or illness. As part of your treatment, your PHI may be shared among the individuals and entities that are affiliated or have a partnership with The Practice. In addition, we may contact you to provide appointment reminders or information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you. We may also disclose PHI to other providers involved in your treatment.
- Payment. We may use and disclose your PHI to obtain payment for services that we provide to you–for example, disclosures to claim and obtain payment from your health insurer, HMO, or other company that arranges or pays the cost of some or all of your health care to verify that they will pay for your health care.
- Health Care Operations. We may use and disclose your PHI for our health care operations. For example, we may use your PHI to evaluate the quality and competence of our physicians, nurses and other health care workers.
B. Business Associates. We may disclose your PHI to persons who perform functions, activities or services to us or on our behalf that require the use or disclosure of PHI. To protect your health information, we require the vendor to appropriately safeguard your information.
C. Public Health Activities. We may disclose your PHI for the public health activities, such as disclosures to a public health authority or other government agency that is permitted by law to collect or receive the information (e.g., the Food and Drug Administration).
D. Victims of Abuse or Neglect. If we reasonably believe you are a victim of abuse or neglect, we may disclose your PHI to a governmental authority, including a social service or protective services agency, authorized by law to receive reports of such abuse or neglect.
E. Health Oversight Activities. We may disclose your PHI to a health oversight agency that oversees the health care and is charged with responsibility for ensuring compliance with the rules of government health programs such as Medicare or Medicaid and civil rights laws.
F. Judicial and Administrative Proceedings. We may disclose your PHI in the course of a judicial or administrative proceeding in response to a legal order or other lawful process.
G. Law Enforcement Officials. We may disclose limited PHI to the police or other law enforcement officials as required or permitted by law or in compliance with a court order or a grand jury or administrative subpoena.
H. Decedents. We may disclose your PHI to a funeral director or medical examiner as authorized by law.
I. Organ and Tissue Procurement. We may disclose your PHI to organizations that facilitate organ, eye or tissue procurement, banking or transplantation.
J. Research. We may use or disclose your PHI for research purposes with your consent or we will ask our Institutional Review Board to approve a waiver of authorization for disclosure. A waiver of authorization will be based upon assurances from the review board that the researchers will adequately protect your PHI.
K. Preventing a Threat to Health and Safety. We may, consistent with applicable law and standards of ethical conduct, use or disclose your PHI to prevent or lessen a serious or imminent threat to the health or safety of a person or the public
L. Specialized Government Functions. We may use and disclose your PHI to units of the government with special functions, such as the U.S. military or the U.S. Department of State under certain circumstances.
M. Workers’ Compensation. We may disclose your PHI as authorized by and to the extent necessary to comply with state law relating to workers’ compensation or other similar programs.
N. As Required by Law. We may use and disclose your PHI when required to do so by federal or state law.