Health Information Management

HIPAA Q&A: You’ve got questions. We’ve got answers!

HIM-HIPAA Insider, July 21, 2014

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Submit your HIPAA questions to Editor Jaclyn Fitzgerald at jfitzgerald@hcpro.com and we will work with our experts to provide you with the information you need.

 
Q: I work for a state-owned psychiatric facility. Our sister hospital recently closed and we are now serving its population. Therefore, we have now become custodians of its electronic medical records, but I'm unsure of what to do if a patient with records from our sister hospital is admitted to our hospital. Should we limit access to health information management services and have a request for medical records placed in the closed hospital's records, or can our clinicians access these records?
 
A: Because these records are being used for treatment purposes, the HIPAA Privacy Rule does not require patient authorization. Unless otherwise restricted by state law, your clinicians may access these records as needed to provide ongoing patient care.
 
Editor’s note: Mary D. Brandt, MBA, RHIA, CHE, CHPS, vice president of health information at Baylor Scott & White Health in Temple, Texas, answered this question for HCPro’s Briefings on HIPAA newsletter.



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