Health Information Management

OCR director releases 'right to access' memo

HIM-HIPAA Insider, June 19, 2012

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OCR’s director released a memorandum May 31 highlighting the importance of a patient’s rights to his or her medical record under the “right to access” component of the HIPAA Privacy Rule.

“The right to see and get a copy of your medical records (called the right to access) is fundamental to your ability to participate in our healthcare system,” wrote Leon Rodriguez, OCR’s director. “For this reason, I know how important it is for you to be able to get your medical records. I see the value of access to health information every day as the Office for Civil Rights does its vital work as the primary protector of the privacy and security of that information under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.”

Rodriguez cited the example when military families need their medical transferred in order to find the very best doctors and specialists or to enroll their children in a new school.

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