HIPAA Privacy Rule protections now give you the right to restrict what health treatment information gets sent to your health plan if you’ve paid for the treatment yourself. Sounds great in theory, but are physicians and hospitals ready to put this policy into practice?
Modifications to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) just went into effect last Tuesday, Mar. 26. This means health entities now have less than 180 days to get their butts into gear to be in compliance with federal law when it comes to storing, using, and sending their patients’ health information. While technology has been great for allowing information to flow more quickly, it hasn’t been so great for keeping information private.
As VSee CEO, Milton explains in this article
suppose your doctor generates an e-prescription for a medication you want to pay for out-of-pocket. The way many systems are automated, the pharmacy may have already billed the health plan before you even arrive. The HIPAA Final Rule workaround for this problem (p. 248) is to have your doctor give you a handwritten prescription, giving you a chance to request a privacy restriction and pay for the medication before any bill goes out. Unfortunately, this defeats the whole purpose of having e-prescriptions and electronic health records.
Read the full Expert Voices article here.
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