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Releasing Protected Health Information

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When it comes to government agencies legal agencies, representatives, and research groups, covered entities may release protected health information only with a patient’s consent and they may release it without consent. Government agencies can release protected health information when the agencies are “required” to release the patients information by law and can release the patients information with or without the patients consent. For example “According to the University of Phoenix’ They will “release information when they are required by law to do so such as for “law enforcement or national security purposes”, “subpoenas” or other “court orders”, “communicable disease reporting”, “disaster relief”, “review of our activities by government agencies”, and if you “avert a serious threat to health or safety or in other kinds of emergencies”. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Confidentiality of Patient Records (2011)(PG1-5)

Patient information can only be released without his or her consent if there was an “emergency”, covered entities “could use and disclose protected health information without an individuals authorization for any of the following reasons “Oversight of the health care system”, including “quality assurance activities”, “Public health”, and in “emergencies affecting life or safety” “Research Judicial and administrative proceedings”, “law enforcement” “to provide information to next-of-kin”, “for identification of the body of a deceased person, or the cause of death”, “for government health data systems”, “for facilities and hospitals directories”, “to financial institutions, for processing payments for health care”, and “in other situations where the use or disclosure is mandated by other law, consistent with the requirements of the other law”. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Confidentiality of Patient Records (2011)(PG1-5)

Covered entities may disclose “protected health information” with or without a patients consent and the principles that permit disclosure of protected health information without a patient’s consent , and whether or not you feel privacy safeguards are adequate to support those principles and if an entity is not covered they do not have to comply with the “privacy rule”. Furthermore, I feel as though if there is an emergency and a family members patient record is not to be shared with another person, but his or her information is shared only to protect him or her, then I believe his or her privacy safeguards are adequate to support those principles, especially if the information is safeguarded and not shared to another person. There are certain rules that must be followed in order to keep a patents personal medical information confidential if it is not going to be used in an emergency situation or if it has to be used.

HIPPA regulations safeguards according to “The HIPPA Administrative Requirements Safeguards, include, “Standard safeguards. A covered entity must have in place appropriate administrative”, “technical”, and “physical safeguards to protect the privacy of protected health information”. Next, “Implementation specification: safeguards is “covered entity must reasonably safeguard protected health information from any intentional or unintentional use or disclosure that is in violation of the standards”, and “implementation specifications or other requirements” Finally, “A covered entity must reasonably safeguard protected health information to limit incidental uses or disclosures made pursuant to an otherwise permitted or required use or disclosure. Covered entities are required and “must reasonably safeguard protected health information to limit incidental uses or disclosures made pursuant to an otherwise permitted or required use or disclosure, and that could be things as simple as locking the file cabinet, locking a door so people do not have access to patient files.

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