Effective 04/01/2003 Revised 02/26/2015
The Health Insurance Portability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) protects the confidentiality of medical records and other personal health information. The rule limits the use and release of individually identifiable health information; gives patients the right to access their medical records; restricts most disclosures of health information to the minimum needed for the intended purpose; and establishes safeguards and restriction regarding the disclosure of records for certain public responsibilities, such as public health, research and law enforcement. Improper uses or disclosures under the rule are subject to criminal and civil sanctions prescribed in HIPAA.
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.
The Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C. collects health information from you, and stores it in a chart and on a computer. This is a medical record. The medical record is the property of the Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C. but the information in the medical record belongs to you. The Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C. protects the privacy of your health information. The law permits the Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C. to use or disclose your health information for the following authorized purposes:
- Coordinating a treatment plan – e.g. to have prescriptions filled
- Payment for services – e.g. to bill your health plan
- Evaluating the quality of care you receive – e.g. to evaluate staff performance which may include conducting training programs in which students, trainees or practitioners in areas of health care learn under supervision to practice or improve their skills. This may also include students evaluating health care career options.
- Research – e.g. to study the effects of medication on the healing process
- Public Health – e.g. to prevent or control disease, injury or disability
- Health Oversight Activities – e.g. to allow the government to monitor the health care system, government programs, and compliance with civil right laws
- Organ and Tissue Donation – e.g. to release information to organizations that handle organ procurement
- Law Enforcement – .g. to identify or locate a suspect, fugitive, material witness or missing person
- Emergencies – e.g. to avert a serious threat to the health and safety of you, another person or the public
- Inmates – e.g. for the correctional institution to protect your health and safety
- Marketing and Fundraising – e.g. to send you information about products or services that we believe may be beneficial to you or to contact you for fundraising activities supported by our office. You may contact our Security Officer to request that these materials not be sent to you.
- Court Ordered – e.g. to provide medical information that is court ordered and or requested by law enforcement officials.
We may disclose your protected health information to our business associates that perform functions on our behalf or provide us with services if the information is necessary for such functions or services. For example, we may use another company to perform billing services. We will disclose only the minimum necessary amount of personal health information needed to accomplish the contracted duties. All of our business associates are obligated under contract with us to protect the privacy of your information and are not allowed to use or disclose any information other than in a manner that would be permissible by Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C. to so.
No other uses or disclosures, except explicitly listed above in the Notice of Privacy Practices, may be made without an individual authorization. You have the right to revoke such an authorization in writing and we will honor your request, except under uncontrollable circumstances in which we acted upon your initial authorization.
Currently, your health information may be shared between health care providers and insurers by telephone, fax, mail, or through limited computer networks. These processes take time and may impose a burden on you or your provider but still not provide a complete record. South Dakota Health Information Exchange automates the process of searching. It allows one participant (for example, a doctor) to locate records from another participant (for example, a hospital) in a matter of minutes. This can be critical in an emergency and may result in your providers having a more complete and accurate health record. All patients at Yankton Medical Clinic, PC are automatically enrolled in this program. Visit website www.pointofcaresd.com for additional information on this program, including how to opt out if you choose to not participate.
You have the right to:
- Request to inspect and/or copy your health records.
- Request an accounting of disclosures of health records.
- Request to amend your health records.
- Request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures or the manner or method of protected health care information. The Clinic is not required to honor a requested restriction.
- Receive confidential communications of protected health care information under certain circumstances.
- File complaints regarding privacy practices and/or unauthorized disclosure of protected health care information.
- Be notified of a security breach that compromises the privacy of your protected health care information.
- Require a health care provider to withhold from any health plan/insurer information pertaining to a treatment that the individual paid for out of pocket. It is the patient’s responsibility to notify the Yankton Medical Clinic in advance when they wish for this to be done.
- Maintain the confidentiality of your genetic information. We may not disclose any genetic information for insurance underwriting purposes.
- Request a written copy of the health care organization’s privacy practices.
If you are concerned that we have violated your privacy rights, and/or would like to express a concern regarding our privacy practices, you may report your complaint in writing to our Security Officer at the address listed below. Ask for the Security Officer for assistance in filing a complaint.
Yankton Medical Clinic, P.C.
1104 West 8th Street
Yankton, SD 57078
You may also send a written complaint to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services at the following address.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights
200 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20201
Toll Free 1-877-696-6775
We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.
Our Legal Duty
We are required by law to protect the privacy of your information, provide this notice about our practices, and to follow the guidelines described in this notice.
We reserve the right to change our policies at any time. If a significant change is made to our policy it will be posted immediately in a conspicuous place in the clinic.