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.
Associates in Women’s Health, “AWH” Physicians and all team member associated with our entity understands the importance of privacy and or committed to maintaining the confidentiality of your medical information. AWH will make a record of the medical care we provide and may receive such records from others. AWH will use these records to provide or enable other health care providers to provide quality medical care, to obtain payment for services provided to you as allowed by your health plan and to enable us to meet our professional and legal obligations to operate this medical practice properly. AWH is required by law to maintain the privacy of protected health information, to provide individuals with notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to protected health information, and to notify affected individuals following a breach of unsecured protected health information. If you have any questions about this Notice, please contact our HIPPA Privacy Officer at (225) 201-05050.
This medical practice, AWH collects health information about you and stores it in a chart and /or in an electronic health record. This is your medical record. This medical record is the property of AWH, but the information in the medical record belongs to you. The law permits us to use or disclose your health information for the following purposes:
1. Treatment. AWH will use medical information about you to provide your medical care. We disclose medical information to our employees and others who are involved in providing the care you need. For example, we may share your medical information with other physicians or other health care providers who will provide services that we do not provide. AWH may share this information with a pharmacist who needs it to dispense a prescription to you, or a laboratory that performs a test. We may also disclose medical information to members of your family or others who can help you when you are sick or injured, or you become deceased.
2. Payment. AWH will use and disclose medical information about you to obtain payment for the services we provide. For example, we give your health plan the information it requires before it will pay us. We may also disclose information to other health care providers to assist them in obtaining payment for services they have provided to you.
3. Health Care Operations. LWH may use and disclose medical information about you to operate this medical practice. For example, we may use and disclose this information to review and improve the quality of care we provide, or the competence and qualifications of our professional staff. AWH may use and disclose this information to get your health plan to authorize services or referrals. We may also use and disclose this information as necessary for medical reviews, legal services and audits, including fraud and abuse detection and compliance programs, and business planning and management. We may also share your medical information with our “business associates” such as our billing service that perform administrative services for us. We have a written contract with each of these business associates that contains terms requiring them and their subcontractors to protect the confidentiality and security of your medical information. We may also share your information with other health care providers, health care clearinghouses or health plans that have a relationship with you, when they request this information to help them with their quality assessment and improvement activities, their patient-safety activities, their population-based efforts to improve health or reduce health care costs, their protocol development, case management or care-coordination activities, their review of competence, qualifications and performance of health care professionals, their training programs, their accreditation, certification or licensing activities, or their health care fraud and abuse detection and compliance efforts.
4. Appointment Reminders. AWH may use and disclose medical information to contact and remind you about appointments. If you are not home, we may leave this information on your answering machine or in a message left with the person answering the phone.
5. Sign in Sheet. AWH may use and disclose medical information about you by having you sign in when you arrive at our office. We may also call out your name when we are ready to see you.
6. Notification and Communication with Family. AWH may disclose your health information to notify or assist in notifying a family member, your personal representative or another person responsible for your care about your location, your general condition or, unless you had instructed us otherwise, in the event of your death. In the event of a disaster, we may disclose information to a relief organization so that they may coordinate these notification efforts. We may also disclose information to someone who is involved with your care or helps pay for your care. IF you are able and available to agree or object, we will give you the opportunity to object prior to making these disclosures, although we may disclose this information in a disaster even over your objection if we believe it is necessary to respond to the emergency circumstances. If you are unable or unavailable to agree or object our health professionals will use their best judgment in communication with you family and others.
7. Required by Law. As required by law, AWH will use and disclose your health information, but we will limit our use or disclosure to the relevant requirement of the law. When the law requires us to report abuse, neglect or domestic violence, or respond to judicial or administrative proceedings, or to law enforcement officials, we will further comply with the requirement set forth below concerning those activities.
8. Public Health. AWH may, and are sometimes required by law to disclose your health information to public health authorities for purposes related to: preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability; reporting child, elder or dependent adult abuse or neglect; reporting domestic violence; reporting to the Food and Drug Administration problems with products and reactions to medications; and reporting disease or infection exposure. When we report suspected elder or dependent adult abuse or domestic violence, we will inform you or your personal representative promptly unless in our best professional judgment, we believe the notification would place you at risk of serious harm or would require informing a personal representative we believe is responsible for the abuse or harm.
9. Health Oversight Activities. AWH may, and are sometimes required by law to disclose your health information to health oversight agencies during the course of audits, investigations, inspections, licensure and other proceedings, subject to the limitations imposed by law.
10. Judicial and Administrative Proceedings. AWH may, and are sometimes required by law, to disclose your health information in the course of any administrative or judicial proceeding to the extend expressly authorized by a court of administrative order. We may also disclose information about you in response to a subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process if reasonable efforts have been made to notify you of the request and you have not objected, or if you objections have been resolved by a court or administrative order.
11. Law Enforcement. AWH may, and are sometimes required by law, to disclose your health information to a law enforcement official for purposes such as identifying or locating a suspect, fugitive, material witness or missing person, complying with a court order, warrant, grand jury subpoena and other law enforcement purposes.
12. Coroners. AWH may, and are often required by law, to disclose your health information to coroners in connection with their investigations of deaths.
13. Organ or Tissue Donation. AWH may disclose your health information to organizations involved in procuring, banking or transplanting organs and tissues.
14. Public Safety. AWH may, and are sometimes required by law, to disclose your health information to appropriate persons in order to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the health or safety of a particular person or the general public.
15. Proof of Immunization. AWH will disclose proof of immunization to a school that is required to have it before admitting a student if you have agreed to the disclosure on behalf of yourself or your dependent.
16. Specialized Government Functions. AWH may disclose your health information for military or national security purposes or to correctional institutions or law enforcement officers that have you in their lawful custody.
17. Workers’ Compensation. AWH may disclose your health information as necessary to comply with worker’s compensation laws. For example, to the extent your care is covered by workers’ compensation, we will make periodic reports to your employer about your condition. We are also required by law to report cases of occupational injury or occupational illness to the employer or workers’ compensation insurer.
18. Change of Ownership. In the event that this medical practice is sold or merged with another organization, your health information/record will become the property of the new owner, although you will maintain the right to request that copies of your health information be transferred to another physician or medical group.
19. Breach Notification. In the case of a breach of unsecured protected health information, we will notify you a required by law. If you have provided us with a current email address, we may use email to communicate information related to the breach. In some circumstances our business associate may provide the notification. We may also provide notification by other methods as appropriate.
20. Psychotherapy Notes. AWH will not use or disclose your psychotherapy notes without your prior written authorization except for the following: 1.) your treatment, 2) for training ours staff, students and other trainees, 3) to defend ourselves if you sue us or bring some other legal proceeding, 4) if the law requires us to disclose the information to you or the Secretary of HHS or for some other reason 5) in response to health oversight activities concerning your psychotherapist, 6) to avert a serious threat to health or safety, or 7) to the coroner or medical examiner after you die. To the extent you revoke an authorization or use or disclose your psychotherapy notes, we wills top using or disclosing these notes.
21. Research. AWH may disclose your health information to researchers conduction research with respect to which your written authorization is not required as approved by an Institutional Review Board or privacy board, in compliance with governing law.
Except as described in the Notice of Privacy Practices, this medical practice will, consistent with its legal obligations, not use or disclose health information which identifies you without your written authorization. If you do authorize this medical practice to use or disclose your health information for another purpose, you may revoke your authorization in writing at any time.
1. Right to Request Special Privacy Protections: You have the right to request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of your health information by a written request specifying what information you want to limit, and what limitations on our use or disclosure of that information you wish to have imposed. If you tell us not to disclose information to your commercial health plan concerning health care items or services for which you paid for a full out-of-pocket, we will abide by your request, unless we must disclose the information for treatment or legal reasons. We reserve the right to accept or reject any other request, and will notify you of our decision.
2. Right to Request Confidential Communications. You have the right to request that you receive your health information in s specific way or at a specific location. For example, you may ask that we send information to a particular e-mail account or to your work address. We will comply with all reasonable request submitted in writing which specify how or where you wish to receive these communications.
3. Right to Inspect and Copy. You have the right to inspect and copy your health information, with limited exceptions. To access you medical information, you must submit a written request detailing what information you want access to, whether you want to inspect it or get a copy of it, and if you want a copy, your preferred form and format. We will provide copies in your requested form and format if it is readily producible, or we will provide you with an alternative format you find acceptable, or if we can’t agree and we maintain the record in an electronic format, we will provide your choice of a readable electronic or hardcopy format. We will also send a copy to any other person you designate in writing. We will charge a reasonable fee which covers our costs for labor, supplies, postage, and if requested and agreed to in advance, the cost of preparing an explanation or summary, as allowed by federal and Louisiana law. We may deny your request under limited circumstance. If we deny your request to access your child’s records or the records of an incapacitated adult you are representing because we believe allowing access would be reasonably likely to cause substantial harm to the patient, you will have a right to appeal our discussion. If we deny your request to access your psychotherapy notes, you will have the right to have them transferred to another mental health professional.
4. Right to Amend. You have a right to request that we amend your health information that you believe is incorrect or incomplete. You must make a request to amend in writing, and include the reasons you believe the information is inaccurate or incomplete. We are not required to change your health information, and will provide you with information about this medical practices’ denial and how you can disagree with denial. We may deny your request if we do not have the information, if we did not create the information (unless the person or entity that created the information is no longer available to make the amendment), if you would not be permitted to inspect or copy the information at issue, or if the information is accurate and complete as is. If we deny your request you may submit a written statement of your disagreement with the decision, and we may, in turn, prepare a written rebuttal. All information related to any request to amend will be maintained and disclosed in conjunction with any subsequent disclosure of the disputed information.
5. Right to an Accounting of Disclosures. You have a right to receive an accounting of disclosures of your health information made by this medical practice, except that this medical practice does not have an account for the disclosure provided to you or pursuant to your written authorization, or as described in paragraphs. 1, 2, 3, 6, and 18 of section A of this Notice of Privacy Practices or disclosures for purposes of research or public health which exclude direct patient identifiers, or which are incident to a use or disclosure otherwise permitted or authorized by law, or the disclosures to a health oversight agency or law enforcement official to the extent this medical practice has received notice from that agency or official that providing this accounting would be reasonably likely to impede their activities.
6. Right to a Paper or Electronic Copy of this Notice. You have a right to notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to your health information, including a right to a paper copy of this Notice of Privacy Practices, even if you have previously requested it receipt by e-mail. If you wild like to have a more detailed explanation of these right or if you would like to exercise one or more of these right., contact our Privacy Officer.
AWH reserves the right to amend this Notice of Privacy Practices at any time in the future. Until such amendment is made, we are required by law to comply with this Notice. After an amendment is made, the revised Notice of Privacy Protection will apply to all protected health information that we maintain, regardless of when it was created or received. We will keep a copy of the current notice posted in our reception area, and a copy will be available at each appointment. We have posted the current notice on our website, www.AWHBR.com
Complaints about this Notice of Privacy Practices or how this medical practice handles your health information should be directed to our Privacy Officer.