In Jacksonville FL An employee’s teenage girl was left unattended in a hospital and she looked up patient’s phone numbers and phoned them to tell them they had tested positive for HIV. One of them attempted suicide.
In Rapid City SID A medical student “stole” the records of a mental health patient to do a research paper. He then threw them away in the dumpster of a fast food restaurant. A person found them and gave them to a newspaper reporter
In Miami FL Hundreds of JMH employees browsed through the records when Italian designer Gianni Versace was transferred to this facility, even though few of them were actually involved in the case.
What is HIPAA? H…health I…insurance P…portability A…accountability A…Act
HIPAA…Definition A US law designed to provide privacy standards to protect patients medical records and other health information provided to health plans, doctors, hospitals and other health care providers.(http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp? articlekey=31785)
HIPAA The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability (HIPAA) was passed on August 21, 1996 The final version of the HIPAA Privacy regulations were issued in December 2000, and went into effect on April 14, 2001(http://www.hipaaps.com/main/background.html)
What is health insurance accountability?A patient’s health information is to be kept private and secure. Only people who MUST have information about the client to provide care or to process client’s records should know his/her private health information
What information must you protect?• Information you create or receive in the course of providing treatment or obtaining payment for services or while engaged in teaching and research activities, including: Information related to the past, present or future physical and/or mental health or condition of an individual Information in ANY medium − whether spoken, written or electronically stored − including videos, photographs and x-rays
Protected Health Information (PHI) A person who passes a computer screen or a fax machine, the individual cleaning your hospital room or any other person talking in an elevator SHOULD NOT learn anything about a patient’s health information because it is private. It must be protected – and it is called Protected Health Information (PHI).
Protected Health Information (PHI)HIPAA defines PHI as individually identifiable health information including: Name, geographic information (address, city, zip code, etc), birth date, admission date, discharge date, date of death, phone/fax/cell number, email address, SS #, account #, insurance #, license #, vehicle ID, URL, IP address, photograph, and/or any unique identifier.
"WRONGFUL DISCLOSURE OFINDIVIDUALLY IDENTIFIABLE HEALTHINFORMATION”"SEC. 1177. (a) OFFENSE.--A person who knowingly and in violation of this part— uses or causes to be used a unique health identifier; obtains individually identifiable health information relating to an individual; or discloses individually identifiable health information to another person, shall be punished…
PENALTIES be fined not more than $50,000, imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both; if the offense is committed under false pretenses, be fined not more than $100,000, imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both; and if the offense is committed with intent to sell, transfer, or use individually identifiable health information for commercial advantage, personal gain, or malicious harm, be fined not more than $250,000, imprisoned not more than 10 years, or bothhttp://aspe.hhs.gov/admnsimp/pl104191.htm#1176
Definition falsepretense - (law) an offense involving intent to defraud and false representation and obtaining property as a result of that misrepresentation.
HIPAA Privacy Rule & Preemption If a state or federal law or regulation grants the client greater access to their PHI, then it will preempt HIPAA If a state or federal law or regulation gives the client health information greater protections from disclosure then it will preempt HIPAA
Ways to Protect Privacy Refrainfrom talking about your patients/clients in public places: cafeteria, elevator, by the water cooler, in lounges, waiting rooms or parking lot.
Ways to Protect Privacy Make sure no one can see your computer screen while you are working Never share your access code Log off when you leave your work area/computer Change your password and notify your supervisor if your password becomes known by anyone else
Ways to Protect Privacy Never leave information on voice-mail or emails…you don’t know who has access to those messages Leave only your name and number on your client’s answering machine when you ask him/her to call you back Make sure you are in a private area when you listen to or read your messages
Ways to Protect Privacy Make sure no one around you can overhear your conversation, especially in an office or waiting room Never leave documents unattended:– Store, file, shred or destroy according to your agency/school policy
Ways to Protect Privacy Make sure fax numbers are correct and use a cover sheet with a confidentiality statement. Give your supervisor forms or materials with client information you find in places such as:– a classroom or lounge, cafeteria, floor or wastebasket.
Ways to Protect Privacy If you happen to see a client in a public place, be careful when greeting him/her. They may not want others to know they have been a client If a client comes to your office with another person, s/he may not want that person to hear his/her private information, so ask the person to wait outside
Question1. A staff person whom you supervise clinically finds you in the staff break room and starts describing a counseling session s/he had with a client today so that s/he can ask for your advice. How would you handle the situation? A. Let the staff person describe the details so that you can provide him/her with guidance. B. Politely remind him/her that you are in a public area and ask him/her to accompany you to your office so that you can discuss this in private C. Ask him/her to get authorization from the client before s/he discusses it further.
Question Areyou willing to risk being fined, losing your job, your license, or going to jail because you don’t follow the legal, the ethical, the RIGHT thing to do?
THANK YOU Questions?carlos@carlosFmartinez.com