Tarheel Medical Supply
HIPAA Notification of Privacy Practices
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.
USE AND DISCLOSURE OF HEALTH INFORMATION
Tarheel Medical Supply may use your health information, information that constitutes protected health information as defined in the Privacy Rule of the Administrative Simplification provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, for purposes of providing you treatment, obtaining payment for your care and conducting health care operations. Tarheel Medical Supply has established policies to guard against unnecessary disclosure of your health information.
THE FOLLOWING IS A SUMMARY OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH AND PURPOSES FOR WHICH YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED:
To Provide Treatment: Tarheel Medical Supply may use your health information to coordinate care within Tarheel Medical Supply and with others involved in your care, such as your attending physician and other health care professionals who have agreed to assist Tarheel Medical Supply in coordinating care. For example, physicians involved in your care will need information about your symptoms in order
to prescribe appropriate medications. Tarheel Medical Supply also may disclose your health care information to individuals outside of Tarheel Medical Supply involved in your care including family members, pharmacists, suppliers of medical equipment or other health care professionals.
To Obtain Payment: Tarheel Medical Supply may include your health information in invoices to collect payment from third parties for the care you receive from Tarheel Medical Supply. For example, Tarheel Medical Supply may be required by your health insurer to provide information regarding your health care status so that the insurer will reimburse you or Tarheel Medical Supply. Tarheel Medical Supply also may need to obtain prior approval from our insurer and may need to explain to the insurer your need for home care and the services that will be provided to you.
To Conduct Health Care Operations: Tarheel Medical Supply may use and disclose health information for its own operations in order to facilitate the function of Tarheel Medical Supply and as necessary to provide quality care to all of Tarheel Medical Supply’s patients. Health care operations include such activities as:
• Quality assessment and improvement activities.
• Activities designed to improve health or reduce health care costs.
• Protocol development, case management and care coordination.
• Contacting health care providers and patients with information about treatment alternatives and other related functions that do not include treatment.
• Professional review and performance evaluation.
• Training programs including those in which students, trainees or practitioners in health care learn under supervision.
• Training of non-health care professionals.
• Accreditation, certification, licensing or credentialing activities.
• Review and auditing, including compliance reviews, medical review, legal services and compliance programs.
• Business planning and development including cost management and planning related analyses and formulary development.
• Business management and general administrative activities of Tarheel Medical Supply.
• Fundraising for the benefit of Tarheel Medical Supply.
For example Tarheel Medical Supply may use your health information to evaluate its staff performance, combine your health information with other Agency patients in evaluating how to more effectively serve all Agency patients, disclose your health information to Agency staff and contracted personnel for training purposes, use your health information to contact
you as a reminder regarding a visit to you, or contact you as part of general fundraising and community information mailings (unless you tell us you do not want to be contacted).
For Fundraising Activities: Tarheel Medical Supply may use information about you including your name, address, phone number and the dates you received care in order to contact you to raise money for Tarheel Medical Supply. Tarheel Medical Supply may also release this information to a related Agency foundation. If
you do not want Tarheel Medical Supply to contact you, notify Privacy Officer and indicate that you do not wish to be contacted.
For Appointment Reminders:Tarheel Medical Supply may use and disclose your health information to contact you as a reminder that you have an appointment for a home delivery.
For Treatment Alternatives: Tarheel Medical Supply may use and disclose your health information to tell you about or recommend possible treatment options or alternatives that may be of interest to you.
THE FOLLOWING IS A SUMMARY OF THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH AND PURPOSES FOR
WHICH YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION MAY ALSO BE USED AND DISCLOSED
When Legally Required:Tarheel Medical Supply will disclose your health information when it is required to do so by any Federal, State or local law.
When There Are Risks to Public Health: Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information for public activities and purposes in order to:
• Prevent or control disease, injury or disability, report disease, injury, vital events such as birth or death and the conduct of public health surveillance, investigations and interventions.
• Report adverse events, product defects, to track products or enable product recalls, repairs and replacements and to conduct post-marketing surveillance and compliance with requirements of the Food and Drug Administration.
• Notify a person who has been exposed to a communicable disease or who may be at risk of contracting or spreading a disease.
• Notify an employer about an individual who is a member of the workforce as legally required.
To Report Abuse, Neglect Or Domestic Violence: Tarheel Medical Supply is allowed to notify government authorities if Tarheel Medical Supply believes a patient is the victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence. Tarheel Medical Supply will make this disclosure only when specifically required or authorized by law or when the patient agrees to the disclosure.
To Conduct Health Oversight Activities: Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information to a health oversight agency for activities including audits, civil administrative or criminal investigations, inspections, licensure or disciplinary action.
Tarheel Medical Supply, however, may not disclose your health information if you are the subject of an investigation which is not directly related to your receipt of health care or public benefits.
In Connection With Judicial And Administrative Proceedings:Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information in the course of any judicial or administrative proceeding in response to an order of a court or administrative tribunal as expressly authorized by such order or in response to a subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process, but only when Tarheel Medical Supply makes
reasonable efforts to either notify you about the request or to obtain an order protecting your health information.
For Law Enforcement Purposes:As permitted or required by State law, Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information to a law enforcement official for certain law enforcement purposes as follows:
• As required by law for reporting of certain types of wounds or other physical injuries pursuant to the court order, warrant, subpoena or summons or similar process.
• For the purpose of identifying or locating a suspect, fugitive, material witness or missing person.
• Under certain limited circumstances, when you are the victim of a crime.
• To a law enforcement official if Tarheel Medical Supply has a suspicion that your death was the result of criminal conduct including criminal conduct at Tarheel Medical Supply.
• In an emergency in order to report a crime.
To Coroners And Medical Examiners: Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information to coroners and medical examiners for purposes of determining your cause of death or for other duties, as authorized by law.
To Funeral Directors: Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information to funeral directors consistent with applicable law and if necessary, to carry out their duties with respect to your funeral arrangements. If necessary to carry out their duties, Tarheel Medical Supply may disclose your health information prior to and in reasonable anticipation of your death.
For Organ, Eye Or Tissue Donation. Tarheel Medical Supply may use or disclose your health information to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement,
banking or transplantation of organs, eyes or tissue for the purpose of facilitating the donation and transplantation.
For Research Purposes: Tarheel Medical Supply may, under very select circumstances, use your health information for research.
Before Tarheel Medical Supply discloses any of your health information for such research purposes, the project will be subject to an extensive approval process.
In the Event of A Serious Threat To Health Or Safety. Tarheel Medical Supply may, consistent with applicable law and ethical standards of conduct, disclose your health information if Tarheel Medical Supply, in good faith, believes that such disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to your health or safety or to the health and safety of the public.
For Specified Government Functions: In certain circumstances, the Federal regulations authorize Tarheel Medical Supply to use or disclose your health information to facilitate specified government functions relating to military and veterans, national security and
intelligence activities, protective services for the President and others, medical suitability determinations and inmates and law enforcement custody.
For Worker’s Compensation. Tarheel Medical Supply may release your health information for worker’s compensation or similar programs.
AUTHORIZATION TO USE OR DISCLOSE HEALTH INFORMATION
Other than is stated above, Tarheel Medical Supply will not disclose your health information other than with your written authorization. If you or your representative authorizes Tarheel Medical Supply to use or disclose your health information, you may revoke that authorization in writing at any time.
YOUR RIGHTS WITH RESPECT TO YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION
You have the following rights regarding your health information that Tarheel Medical Supply maintains:
• Right to request restrictions. You may request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of your health information. You have the right to request a limit on Tarheel Medical Supply’s disclosure of your health information to someone who is involved in your care or the payment of your care. However, Tarheel Medical Supply is not required to agree to your request. If you wish to make a request for restrictions, please contact the Privacy Officer.
• Right to receive confidential communications. You have the right to request that Tarheel Medical Supply communicate with you in a certain way. For example, you may ask that Tarheel Medical Supply only conduct communications pertaining to your health information with you privately with no other family members present. If you wish to receive confidential communications, please contact the Privacy Officer. Tarheel Medical Supply will not request that you provide any reasons for your request and will attempt to honor your reasonable requests for confidential communications.
• Right to inspect and copy your health information. You have the right to inspect and copy your health information, including billing records. A request to inspect and copy records containing your health information may be made to the Privacy Officer. If you request a copy of your health information, Tarheel Medical Supply may charge a reasonable fee for copying and assembling costs associated with your request.
• Right to amend health care information. You or your representative, have the right to request that Tarheel Medical Supply amend your records, if you believe that your health information is incorrect or incomplete. That request may be made as long as the information is maintained by Tarheel Medical Supply. A request for an amendment of records must be made in writing to the Privacy Officer.
Tarheel Medical Supply may deny the request if it is not in writing or does not include a reason for the amendment. The request also may be denied if your health information records were not created by Tarheel Medical Supply, if the records you are requesting are not part of Tarheel Medical Supply record s, if the health information you wish to amend is not part of the health information you or your representative are permitted to inspect and copy, or if, in the opinion of Tarheel Medical Supply, the records containing your health information are accurate and complete.
• Right to an accounting. You or your representative have the right to request and accounting of disclosures of your health information made by Tarheel Medical Supply for certain reasons, including reasons related to public purposes authorized by law and certain research. The request for an accounting must be made in writing to the Privacy Officer. The request should specify the time period for the accounting starting on or after April 14, 2003. Accounting requests may not
be made for periods of time in excess of six (6) years. Tarheel Medical Supply would provide the first accounting you request during any 12-month period without charge. Subsequent accounting requests may be subject to a reasonable cost-based fee.
• Right to a paper copy of this notice. You or your representative has a right to a separate paper copy of this notice at any time even if you or your representative has received this notice previously. To obtain a separate paper copy, please contact Privacy Officer.