HIPAA & PRIVACY
Notice of Privacy Practices
This notice describes how information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please read and review carefully.
Commitment to Privacy
HME Specialists is dedicated to maintaining the privacy of your healthcare information and we are required by law to maintain the confidentiality of information that identifies you. Any use of healthcare information beyond the uses described below requires your individual written authorization. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) obligates HME Specialists to provide you with a copy of our Privacy Notice outlining our privacy practices and how we safeguard your health information. HME Specialists abides by the terms of the Privacy Notice currently in effect and reserves the right to revise or amend the notice as needed.
Your Health Information Rights
Although your health record is the physical property of the healthcare facility that compiled it, the information belongs to you. You have the right to:
- Request a restriction on certain uses and disclosures of your information. Specifically, you have the right to request a restriction on certain disclosures to your health plan(s) if the disclosure is purely for carrying out payment or health care operations and the requested restriction is for services for which you have paid in full out-of-pocket.
- Obtain a paper copy of the notice of privacy practices.
- Inspect and copy your healthcare record.
- Obtain an accounting of disclosures of your health information.
- Request confidential communication.
- Amend your healthcare record.
- Revoke your authorization to use or disclose health information except to the extent that action has already been taken.
- Request an electronic copy of electronic medical records.
HME Specialists Responsibilities
- Maintain privacy of your health information.
- Provide you with a notice as to our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to information we collect and maintain about you.
- Abide by the terms of this notice.
- Notify you if we are unable to agree to a requested restriction.
- Accommodate reasonable requests you may have to communicate health information by alternative means.
- Notify you of any breaches of unsecured Protected Health Information that may occur.
HME Specialists reserves the right to change our practices and to make the new provisions effective for all protected health information we maintain. Should our information practices change, we will mail a revised notice to your address on file. We will not use or disclose your health information without your authorization, except for treatment, payment and healthcare operations.
Examples of Disclosure for Treatment, Payment and Healthcare Operations
We will use your health information for treatment. Information obtained by our company will be documented in your healthcare record and will be used to provide you with durable medical equipment and/or supplies and prescription medications. The prescription that your physician has provided will be part of the record and will determine the equipment and/or supplies or prescription medication that you will receive.
We will use your health information for payment. In order to determine your eligibility for equipment and/or supplies and prescription medications, HME Specialists may contact your insurance company and disclose healthcare related information. Also, HME Specialists will bill you or a third-party payer for services that you receive from our company. The health information that identifies you, your diagnosis, equipment and/or supplies and medications may be included on the bill.
We will use your health information for healthcare operations. HME Specialists may use your health information to evaluate the quality of care you receive from us, to conduct cost management assessments and to plan business activities. This information is used in an effort to continually improve the quality and effectiveness of the healthcare services we provide.
We may use your health information for appointment reminders, as well as treatment alternatives and health related benefits and services.
Other Uses or Disclosures
Business Associates: There are some individuals who are under contract with HME Specialists and, from time to time, are engaged in the improvement or financial enhancement of our business. So that your health information is protected, however; we require any business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.
Public Health: As required by law, we may disclose your health information to public health or legal authorities charged with preventing or controlling disease, injury, or disability.
Law Enforcement: We may disclose health information for law enforcement purposes as required by law, or in response to a valid subpoena.
Oversight Activities: We may disclose health information to health oversight agencies for activities authorized by law, including surveys, audits, and compliance inspections.
Worker’s Compensation: We may release your health information to the extent necessary to comply with laws or regulations relating to workers compensation or other similar programs established by law.
Data Breach Notification: We may use or disclose your Protected Health Information to provide legally required notices of unauthorized access to or disclosure of your health information.
Uses or Disclosures that Require your Authorization
There are certain types of uses and disclosures of your health information that require that we obtain a separate authorization from you, specifically, any use or disclosure of your protected health information for marketing purposes or disclosures that constitute a sale of protected health information. Any other uses and disclosures not described in this Notice will be made only with your authorization.
For More Information:
Contact HME Specialists Privacy Officer for additional information at (866) 690-6500. The Privacy Officer can assist you with pursuing your rights including:
- Requesting restrictions
- Inspecting and copying your record
- Securing an accounting of disclosures
- Requesting additional disclosures
- Revoking authorization at any time
- Filing a complaint
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may contact our company’s Privacy Officer. You may also file a complaint with the Secretary of Health and Human Services (Office of Civil Rights). There will be no retaliation for filing a complaint.