What are HIPAA guidelines?

Medical professionals treat patients every day. They are consulting with patients on various diseases and injuries that they are seeking treatment for. Information about these patients is private. As individuals, we would not want our personal information known to everyone. In the medical field, healthcare professionals have an obligation to keep information about patients private. They are not able to reveal this information to other people. This can include family and friends of the patient. HIPAA laws are derived from the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act that was created to ensure that medical professionals are not sharing confidential information about patients with other individuals. This bars physicians from sharing information with others to protect the privacy of the patient they are treating. Their information cannot be made public. Although their conditions may not be sensitive information, it is still confidential information due to these laws.

Can family members be informed?

A patient has the ability to name specific individuals that a medical professional can release information to about their health.When patients complete paperwork, they may include individuals that are allowed to receive information about their conditions, meaning the doctor can provide them with information on the patient’s health. In these forms, they are giving their physician the approval to relay this information to that specific individual. This individual may be a spouse, a parent or anyone else they wish to have information given to. By providing this consent, the medical professional is not breaking HIPAA laws when they inform them of the patient’s condition.

What happens if HIPAA laws are broken?

When HIPAA laws are broken, a patient has the ability to seek legal action against a medical professional. That professional was supposed to keep information about the patient private. They took an oath when they received their medical license to do so. By breaking HIPAA laws, these medical professionals can face legal action that results in penalties. They may go before a board that can decide on what the best penalty for them is. This can include a time period where they are unable to practice medicine or they may have their medical license revoked completely. When medical professionals face these incidents, they should seek legal counsel to protect their jobs. They do not want to lose their medical license and have their livelihood in jeopardy. When a medical professional is accused of misconduct, it is essential that they retain strong legal representation. If you require a medical law attorney for your legal matters, call Paul E. Walker, an experienced New York City OPMC & OPD Lawyer. Please contact the Walker Medical Law firm to set up a free initial consultation.