NOTICE 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.
During your treatment at Volunteers of America Eastern Washington, our employees may gather information about your medical history and your current health. This notice explains how that information may be used and shared with others. It also explains your privacy rights regarding this kind of information.
The terms of this notice apply to health information created or received by Volunteers of America Eastern Washington and is effective as of June 1st, 2022.
Volunteers of America Eastern Washington is committed to protecting patient privacy. We are required by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to provide you with this Notice of Privacy Practices and to make sure that: your identifiable medical information is kept private; you understand our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to medical information about you; the terms of the notice that are currently in effect are followed; and you are notified in the event of a breach of any unsecured protected health information about you.
When it comes to your health information, you have certain rights.
This section explains your rights and some of our responsibilities to help you.
Get an electronic or paper copy of your medical record
- You can ask to see or get an electronic or paper copy of your medical record and other health information we have about you. Ask us how to do this.
• We will provide a copy or a summary of your health information, usually within 30 days of your request. We may charge a reasonable, cost-based fee. Ask us to correct your medical record
• You can ask us to correct health information about you that you think is incorrect or incomplete. Ask us how to do this.
• We may say no to your request, but well tell you why in writing within 60 days.
Request confidential communications
• You can ask us to contact you in a specific way (for example, home or office phone) or to send mail to a different address.
• We will say yes to all reasonable requests.
Ask us to limit what we use or share
• You can ask us not to use or share certain health information for treatment, payment, or our operations. We are not required to agree to your request, and we may say no if it would affect your care.
• If you pay for a service or health care item out-of-pocket in full, you can ask us not to share that information for the purpose of payment or our operations with your health insurer. We will say yes unless a law requires us to share that information.
Get a list of those with whom we’ve shared information
• You can ask for a list (accounting) of the times we’ve shared your health information for six years prior to the date you ask, who we shared it with, and why.
• We will include all the disclosures except for those about treatment, payment, and health care operations, and certain other disclosures (such as any you asked us to make). Well provide one accounting a year for free but will charge a reasonable, cost-based fee if you ask for another one within 12 months.
Get a copy of this privacy notice
• You can ask for a paper copy of this notice at any time, even if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically. We will provide you with a paper copy promptly.
Choose someone to act for you
• If you have given someone medical power of attorney or if someone is your legal guardian, that person can exercise your rights and make choices about your health information.
• We will make sure the person has this authority and can act for you before we take any action.
• You can complain if you feel we have violated your rights by contacting us using the information above/
• You can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights by sending a letter to 200 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20201, calling 1-877-696-6775, or visiting www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/complaints/.
• We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.
For certain health information, you can tell us your choices about what we share. If you have a clear preference for how we share your information in the situations described below, talk to us. Tell us what you want us to do, and we will follow your instructions.
In these cases, you have both the right and choice to tell us to:
• Share information with your family, close friends, or others involved in your care
• Share information in a disaster relief situation
• Include your information in a hospital directory
If you are not able to tell us your preference, for example if you are unconscious, we may go ahead and share your information if we believe it is in your best interest. We may also share your information when needed to lessen a serious and imminent threat to health or safety.
In these cases, we never share your information unless you give us written permission:
• Marketing purposes
• Sale of your information
• Most sharing of psychotherapy notes
In the case of fundraising:
• We may contact you for fundraising efforts, but you can tell us not to contact you again.
Our Uses and Disclosures
How do we typically use or share your health information?
We typically use or share your health information in the following ways.
We can use your health information and share it with other professionals who are treating you. Example: A doctor treating you for an injury asks another doctor about your overall health condition.
Run our organization
We can use and share your health information to run our practice, improve your care, and contact you when necessary. Example: We use health information about
you to manage your treatment and services.
Bill for your services
We can use and share your health information to bill and get payment from health plans or other entities. Example: We give information about you to your health insurance plan so it will pay for your services. How else can we use or share your health information?
We are allowed or required to share your information in other ways usually in ways that contribute to the public good, such as public health and research. We have to meet many conditions in the law before we can share your information for these purposes.
Help with public health and safety issues
We can share health information about you for certain situations such as:
• Preventing disease
• Helping with product recalls
• Reporting adverse reactions to medications
• Reporting suspected abuse, neglect, or domestic violence
• Preventing or reducing a serious threat to anyone’s health or safety
We can use or share your information for health research.
We will share information about you if state or federal laws require it, including with the Department of Health and Human Services if it wants to see that were complying with federal privacy law.
Respond to organ and tissue donation requests
We can share health information about you with organ procurement organizations.
Work with a medical examiner or funeral director
We can share health information with a coroner, medical examiner, or funeral director when an individual dies.
Address workers compensation, law enforcement, and other government requests
We can use or share health information about you:
• For workers compensation claims
• For law enforcement purposes or with a law enforcement official
• With health oversight agencies for activities authorized by law
• For special government functions such as military, national security, and presidential protective services
Respond to lawsuits and legal actions
We can share health information about you in response to a court or administrative order, or in response to a subpoena.
• We are required by law to maintain the privacy and security of your protected health information.
• We will let you know promptly if a breach occurs that may have compromised the privacy or security of your information.
• We must follow the duties and privacy practices described in this notice and give you a copy of it.
• We will not use or share your information other than as described here unless you tell us we can in writing. If you tell us we can, you may change your mind at any time. Let us know in writing if you change your mind.
Notice Regarding the Use of Technology
We may use electronic software, services, and equipment, including without limitation to email, video conferencing technology, cloud storage and servers, internet communication, cellular network, voicemail, facsimile, electronic health record, and related technology (Technology) to share Protected Health Information (PHI) with you or third-parties subject to the rights and restrictions contained herein. In any event, certain unencrypted storage, forwarding, communications and transfers may not be confidential. We will take measures to safeguard the data transmitted, as well as ensure its integrity against intentional or unintentional breach or corruption. However, in very rare circumstances security protocols could fail, causing a breach of privacy or PHI.
Changes to the Terms of this Notice
We can change the terms of this notice, and the changes will apply to all information we have about you. The new notice will be available upon request, in our office, and on our web site.
Complaints or Questions
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with us by notifying our Privacy Officer
- Kirsten De Simone
- (509) 688-1106
- Or the Secretary of Health and Human Services. We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.
ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF RECEIPT OF NOTICE
Under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), you have certain rights regarding the use and disclosure of your protected health information. These rights are more fully described in Volunteers of America Eastern Washington Notice of Privacy Practices. Volunteers of America Eastern Washington is permitted to revise its Notice of Privacy Practices at any time. We will provide you with a copy of the revised Notice of Privacy Practices upon your request.