This notice describes how your medical information is protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) act, as well as how your information may be used, disclosed, and accessed. Please review it carefully.
Understanding Your Protected Health Information (PHI)
As a patient, each time you visit a Brain and Spine Institute of California office or see a Brain and Spine Institute of California provider in any patient care setting, a record of your visit is made. This record contains information about your symptoms, examinations, test results, medications you take, your allergies and the plan for your care. This information we refer to as your health or medical record and is an essential part of the healthcare we provide for you. Your health record contains Protected Health Information (PHI) and there are state and federal laws to protect the privacy of your health information.
Uses and Disclosures of PHI
Brain and Spine Institute of California is required by law to maintain the privacy of Protected Health Information, to provide notice of its legal duties and privacy practices with respect to Protected Health Information, to abide by the terms of this notice, and to notify affected individuals following a breach of unsecured Protected Health Information. Brain and Spine Institute of California reserves the right to amend or change the terms of this notice. Should provisions of our Privacy Practices be revised, Brain and Spine Institute of California will notify affected individuals in writing by redistributing the new notice effective for all Protected Health Information we maintain. Disclosures not described in this notice will be made only with your prior written authorization.
We Will Use Your PHI for Treatment
All the physicians, nurses and clinical staff involved in your care will document in your record about your examination and the care planned for you. If you were referred to us from another provider, your Brain and Spine Institute of California provider may send copies of your medical record to the provider who referred you to us so your provider will have updated treatment information about your care.
We May Disclose Your PHI With Other Professionals
We may also disclose PHI to other medical institutions or medical professionals who are involved in the delivery of services to you.
We May Use Your PHI for Contact Purposes
We may also use your PHI to call you or send you a written reminder about an appointment, to follow up with diagnostic tests results, or to provide you with information about other treatment and care that could benefit your health.
We Will Use Your PHI for Payment
We may use your PHI to generate a bill or invoice for services provided and to process payment for those services.
We Will Use Your PHI for Regular Healthcare Operations
The Brain and Spine Institute of California physicians, nurses, managers, and staff may access and use your PHI to conduct daily operations and to complete quality reviews to assess care and results in your case, and other cases like yours.
Other Disclosures Business Associates
There are some services provided in our organization through contacts with business associates. Examples include compounding pharmacies. To protect your health information, however, we require the business associate to protect your PHI.
Communication with Others
We may disclose to a family member, other relative, close personal friend or any other person you identify, PHI relevant to that person’s involvement in your care or payment related to your care. The disclosure will only be made if you agree, or are silent when given the opportunity to disagree or if we believe, based on the circumstances and our professional judgment, that you do not object. If you are incapacitated or in an emergency, we may disclose to a family member, other relative, close personal friend, or any other person accompanying you, PHI directly relevant to the person’s involvement in your care or payment for your care.
Under certain circumstances, we may use and disclose medical information about you for research purposes. All research projects, however, are subject to special approval processes which are designed to maintain the required privacy and security standards for your Protected Health Information.
You Have the Right to Request Restrictions or to Revoke
You have the right to request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information and the right to revoke an authorization at any time, provided that the request is made in writing. The Brain and Spine Institute of California is not required to agree to a requested restriction.
Receive Confidential Communications
You have the right to request to receive communications of Protected Health Information by alternative means or at alternative locations.
Access Your PHI
You have the right to inspect and copy your Protected Health Information as required by law.
Amend Your PHI
You have the right to request to amend your Protected Health Information or your record as specified by law.
Receive an Accounting of Disclosures
You have the right to receive an accounting of disclosures of Protected Health Information as required by law. Receive a Paper Copy of this Privacy Notice You have the right to obtain a paper copy of the notice upon request, regardless if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically
As Required by Law We may also disclose Protected Health Information without your written authorization to the following types of entities but not limited to:
- Food and Drug Administration
- Public Health or legal authorities charged with disease prevention
- Correctional institutions
- Workers Compensation Agents
- Organ and Tissue Donation Organizations
- Military Command Authorities
- Health Oversight Agencies
- Funeral Directors, Coroners and Medical Examiners
- National Security and Intelligence Agencies
- Law enforcement as required by law or in accordance with a valid subpoena
- To avoid a serious threat to the health and safety of a person or the public
We will not use information in your records for marketing.
For More Information or to Report a Problem
If you have any questions about your rights, our duties or our practices and procedures regarding Protected Health Information, please call The Brain and Spine Institute of California’s Privacy Officer at the number below. You may also obtain a copy of this notice on our web site at basicspine.com. If you believe your privacy rights have been or are being violated, you may complain to the Brain and Spine Institute of California and to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. Complaints to the Secretary must be filed in writing on paper or electronically and must be made within 180 days of when you became aware of, or should have been aware of, the incidents giving rise to your complaint. At The Brain and Spine Institute of California, you may contact one of our privacy officers at (949) 565-2217. By law, you cannot be penalized for filing a complaint.