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September 23, 2004

New Health Privacy Regulations: How HIPPA Rules & Regulations Impact Pastoral Visitors by George Hankins-Hull

Pastoral Care departments across the country have had to interpret how the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or HIPAA governs the release of patient information to pastoral care providers.

The basic intent of HIPAA is very simple: to keep a firm grasp on the confidentiality rights and needs of patients, while not encumbering their treatment.

This includes making certain that the patient understands all of their rights about care and the necessary release of information to provide that care while still protecting the patient's privacy.

In the light of the new HIPAA regulations Pastoral care departments have had to develop new policies, protocols and procedures to guide the release of patient's information to pastoral care visitors. I have written New Health Privacy Regulations: How HIPPA Rules & Regulations Impact Pastoral Visitors (Download file)to provide local pastoral care providers, in the Lakes Region of NH, information as to how HIPAA impacts them and the type of information they can obtain about a patient at LRGHealthcare.

I think it would be helpful to other Pastoral Care departments to see how various health care institutions are providing protected patient information to pastoral care providers in other parts of the country. If you agree, please share how your department is addressing the HIPAA regulation.

Posted by Perry Miller at September 23, 2004 10:26 AM

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