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 office of Peter G. Aline, M.D., respects your privacy. We understand that your personal health information is very sensitive. We will not disclose your information to others unless you tell us to do so, or unless the law requires us to do so

The law protects the privacy of the health information we create and obtain in providing our care and services to you. For example, your protected health information includes your symptoms, test results, diagnoses, and treatment; health information from other providers, and billing and payment information relating to these services. Federal and state law allows us to use and disclose your protected health information for purposes of treatment and health care operations.

Examples of Use and Disclosures of Protected Health Information for Treatment and Health Care Operations

For treatment:
• Information obtained by a nurse, physician, or any other member of our health care team will be recorded in your medical record and used to help decide what care may be right for you.
• We may disclose medical information about you to doctors, nurses, technicians, and other personnel who assist with or are involved in your medical care.
• Different physicians, staff in other physicians’ offices, and our employees and subcontractors also may share medical information about you in order to coordinate your care.
• We may also provide information to others providing you care, or to others who are providing services which are part of your care. This will help them stay informed about your care.
• We may also release information to individuals and corporations involved in paying for your care.

For health care operations:
• We request payment from your health insurance plan. Health plans require information from us about your medical care. Information provided to health plans may include your diagnoses; procedures performed, and recommended care.
• We use your medical records to assess quality and improve services.
• We may use and disclose medical records to review the qualifications and performance of our health care providers and to train our staff.
• We may contact you to remind you about appointments and give you information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services.
• We may use and disclose your information to conduct or arrange for services, including: Medical Quality Review by your health plan; Accounting, legal, risk management, and insurance services; Audit functions, including fraud and abuse detection and compliance programs.

Health Information Rights
The health and billing records we create and store are the property of the practice. The protected health information in it, however, generally belongs to you.

You have a right to:
• Receive, read, and ask questions about this Notice; Ask us to restrict certain uses and disclosures. You must deliver this request in writing to us. We are not required to grant the request, however we will comply with any request granted.
• Request and receive from us a paper copy of the most current Notice of Privacy Practices for Protected Health Information.
• Request that you be allowed to see and get a copy of your protected health information.
You may make this request in writing. We have a form available for this type of request.

• Have us review a denial of access to your health information—except in certain circumstances;
• Ask us to change your health information.
 You may give us this request in writing.
 You may write a statement of disagreement if your request is denied. It will be stored in your medical record, and included with any release of your records.

• When you request, we will give you a list of disclosures of your health information. The list will not include disclosures to third-party payers. You may receive this information without charge once every 12 months. We will notify you of the cost involved if you request this information more than once in 12 months.

• Ask that your health information be given to you by another means or at another location. Please sign, date, and give us your request in writing.

• Cancel prior authorizations to use or disclose health information by giving us a written revocation. Your revocation does not affect information that has already been released. It also does not affect any action taken before we have received your revocation. Sometimes, you cannot cancel an authorization if its purpose was to obtain insurance. Note: once insurance companies have your information it may not be protected. Insurance companies can and do share information among themselves.

For help with these rights during normal business hours, please contact us as noted at the bottom of this notice.

Our Responsibilities

We are required to: • Keep your protected health information private; • Give you this Notice; • Follow the terms of this Notice.

We have the right to change our practices regarding the protected health information we maintain. If we make changes, we will update this Notice. You may receive the most recent copy of this Notice by calling and asking for it, by visiting our office to pick one up, or by checking at this site.

To Ask for Help or Report a Problem

If you have questions, want more information, or want to report a problem about the handling of your protected health information, you may contact us.

If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may discuss your concerns with any staff member. You may also deliver a written or verbal complaint to us at our office. You may also file a complaint with the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.

We respect your right to file a complaint with us or with the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. If you complain, we will not retaliate against you.

Other Disclosures and Uses of Protected Health Information

Notification of Family and Others:

Unless you object, we may release health information about you to a friend or family member. We may also give information to someone who helps pay for your care. We may tell your family or friends your condition and that you are in a hospital. In addition, we may disclose health information about you to assist in disaster relief efforts. • Information may be provided to people who ask for you by name. We may use and disclose the following information in a hospital directory: • Your name, • Location (within the facility,) • General condition, and • Religion (only to clergy).

You have the right to restrict this use or disclosure of your information. If you object, we will not use or disclose it.

We may use and disclose your protected health information without your specific authorization as follows: • With Medical Researchers—if the research has been approved and has policies to protect the privacy of your health information. We may also share information with medical researchers preparing to conduct a research project. • To Funeral Directors/Coroners consistent with applicable law to allow them to carry out their duties. • To Organ Procurement Organizations (tissue donation and transplant) or persons who obtain, store, or transplant organs. • To the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) relating to problems with food, supplements, and products. • To Comply With Workers’ Compensation Laws—if you make a workers’ compensation claim. • For Public Health and Safety Purposes as Allowed or Required by Law: • To prevent or reduce a serious, immediate threat to the health or safety of a person, • Or the public. • To public health or legal authorities. • To protect public health and safety. • To prevent or control disease, injury, or disability. • To report vital statistics such as births or deaths. • To Report Suspected Abuse or Neglect to public authorities. • To Correctional Institutions if you are in jail or prison, as necessary for your health and the health and safety of others. • For Law Enforcement Purposes such as when we receive a subpoena, court order, or other legal process, or if you are the victim of a crime. • For Health and Safety Oversight Activities. For example, we may share health information with the Department of Health. • For Disaster Relief Purposes. For example, we may share health information with disaster relief agencies to assist in notification of your condition to family or others. • For Work-Related Conditions That Could Affect Employee Health. For example, an employer may ask us to assess health risks on a job site. • To the Military Authorities of U.S. and Foreign Military Personnel. For example, the law may require us to provide information necessary to a military mission. • In the Course of Judicial/Administrative Proceedings at your request, or as directed by a subpoena or court order. • For Specialized Government Functions. For example, we may share information for national security purposes, or to protect the President of the United States or other authorized persons or foreign heads of state.

Other Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information

Uses and disclosures not in this Notice will be made only as allowed or required by law or with your written authorization.

Changes to this Notice

We reserve the right to change this notice. We reserve the right to make the revised or changed notice effective for medical information we already have about you as well as any information we receive in the future.

Conflict with HIPAA Regulations

Wherever any federal, state, or local regulation, whether under the act commonly known as ‘HIPPA’ or any other recognized law contains a provision that conflicts with this document, then the federal, state, or local law or regulation shall prevail.

Effective Date: June 6, 2006

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       Peter Aline md