HIPAA is short for Health Information Portability and Accountability Act. It’s an important piece of legislation that was put in place 1996 to protect our personal medical information from getting into unwanted hands. HIPAA governs medical privacy, medical data security, and sets the standards for how medical information can be transmitted physically or electronically.
Medical information that can identify you and other health care providers and supporters (ie – name, phone number, social security number) or that describes your medical care and treatment is called Protected Health Information (PHI). Your health care provider has to collect information from you. But it is their duty to protect it from leaving authorized places or from being sold to third parties who may use it for reasons outside of your consent.
During care with Grace Healthcare, you give us permission to collect the necessary information we need to provide care for you and to share this information only as it allows us to service you and your healthcare needs concerning treatment, payment, and other health care operations.
Examples of HIPAA violations:
- Improper disposal of patient records.
- Sharing your information with family members or coworkers looking into a person’s medical records without authorization.
- Releasing information to an undesignated/unauthorized party.
- Releasing the wrong patient’s information, through a careless mistake, to the wrong patient.
- Not securing an electronic device that contains client information.