Unit 4 HIPPA Essay
HEALTH INFORMATION PROTECTED BY FEDERAL LAW
Your health information is protected by federal law. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, also known as HIPAA, and in its early stages also referred to as the Kennedy-Kassebaum Act, taking its name from Edward Kennedy and Nancy Kassebaum, the two senators who introduced and supported it. The law protects what types of information are to be released and to whom they may be released to. It includes any information that may be used in some way to identify a person, such as a ZIP code, date of birth, or Social Security Number. This applies to all forms of individuals’ protected health information, whether electronic, written or oral.
HIPAA privacy laws require that appropriate steps are taken in the administrative, technical, and physical processes to maintain confidentiality of a patient’s health records. As of April 14, 2003, all medical providers must present a copy of their notice of privacy practices to each patient at the first visit to a practice. Under HIPAA guidelines, a patient has rights over their own personal health records (PHI).
A patient has the right to obtain copies of their PHI as well as be notified of non-routine and unauthorized disclosure of their records. They may also have confidential discussions with their care providers without this information being released to unauthorized personnel. Patients also have the right to file a complaint against a provider to that provider and also to the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
Each person that handles PHI must be aware of the penalties that HIPPA and the Privacy and Security Rules enforce for compromising such information. These can include ten years imprisonment and fines of up to $250,000.00. Compliance to changes in HIPPA is imperative for all medical facilities.
LaToya J. Murray, e. C. (n.d.). The Health Care HIPAA Law. Retrieved...