We understand that health information about you and your health care is personal. We are committed to protecting health information about you. We create a record of the care and services you receive from us. This Notice describes your rights as our patient and our obligations regarding the use and disclosure of health information. Law requires us to:
Make sure that health information that identifies you is kept private;
Provide you with this Notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to health information about you; and
Comply with the terms of the Notice that is currently in effect.
HOW WE MAY USE AND DISCLOSE PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU:
The following categories describe the different ways we may use and disclose health information for treatment, payment or health care operations. The examples included with each category do not list every type of use or disclosure that may fall within that category.
We may use and disclose health information about you to provide you with health care treatment or services. We may disclose health information about you to doctors, nurses, technicians, health students, or other personnel who are involved in taking care of you. They may work at our offices, at the hospital if you are hospitalized under our supervision, or at another doctor’s office, lab, pharmacy, or other health care provider to whom we may refer you for consultation, testing or treatment. For example, we may use and disclose health information when you need a prescription, lab work, x-ray, or health care services. In addition, we may use and disclose health information about you when referring you to another health care provider, including electronic transmission when necessary to other physicians for treatment purposes. We may also disclose health information about you to an entity assisting in a disaster relief effort so that your family can be notified about your condition, status and location.
We may use and disclose health information about you so that the treatment and services you receive from us may be billed to, and payment collected from you, an insurance company, or a third party. For example, we may need to give your health plan information about your office visit so your health plan will pay us or reimburse you for the visit. We may also tell your health plan about treatment you are going to receive to obtain prior approval or to determine whether your plan will cover the treatment.
HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS:
We may use and disclose health information about you for operations of our health care practice. These uses and disclosures are necessary to run our practice and make sure that all of our patients receive quality care. For example, we may use health information to review our treatment and services and to evaluate the performance of our staff in caring for you. We may also combine health information about many patients to decide what additional services we should offer, what services are not needed, whether certain new treatments are effective, or to compare how we are doing with others and to see where we can make improvements. We may remove information that identifies you from this set of health information so that others may use it to study health care delivery without learning who our specific patients are.
ORGAN AND TISSUE DONATION:
If you are an organ donor, we may release health information to organizations that handle organ procurement or organ, eye or tissue transplantation or to an organ donation bank, as necessary to facilitate organ or tissue donation and transplantation.
AS REQUIRED BY LAW:
We will disclose health information about you when required to do so by federal, state, or local law.
TO AVERT A SERIOUS THREAT TO HEALTH OR SAFETY:
We may use and disclose health information about you when necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of the public or another person. Any disclosure, however, would only be to someone able to help prevent the threat.
MILITARY AND VETERANS:
If you are a member of the armed forces or separated/discharged from military services, we may release health information about you as required by military command authorities or the Department of Veterans Affairs as may be applicable. We may also release health information about foreign military personnel to the appropriate foreign military authorities.
We may release health information about you for workers’ compensation or similar programs. These programs provide benefits for work-related injuries or illness.
PUBLIC HEALTH RISKS:
We may disclose health information about you for public health activities as required or permitted by law. These activities generally include the following: To prevent or control disease, injury or disability; to report births and certain deaths; to report child abuse or neglect; to report reactions to medications or problems with products; to notify people of recalls of products they may be using; to notify person or organization required to receive information on FDA-regulated products; to notify a person who may have been exposed to a disease or may be at risk for contracting or spreading a disease or condition; to notify the appropriate government authority if we believe a patient has been the victim of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence. We will only make this disclosure if you agree or when required or authorized by law.
HEALTH OVERSIGHT ACTIVITIES:
We may disclose health information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law. These oversight activities include, for example, audits, investigations, inspections, and licensure. These activities are necessary for the government to monitor the health care system, government programs, and compliance with civil rights laws.
LAWSUITS AND DISPUTES:
If you are involved in a lawsuit or a dispute, we may disclose health information about you in response to a court order, or appropriate administrative order as required by law, that is signed by a judge. For other requests, we comply with a valid patient authorization.
LAW ENFORCEMENT AND INMATES:
We may release health information if asked to do so by a law enforcement official in certain limited cases: In response to a court order, warrant, or similar process signed by a judge; If you are an inmate of a correctional institution or under the custody of a law enforcement official, we may release health information about you to the correctional institution or law enforcement official. This release would be necessary (1) for the institution to provide you with health care; (2) to protect your health and safety or the health and safety of others; or (3) for the safety and security of the correctional institution.
CORONERS, HEALTH EXAMINERS, AND FUNERAL DIRECTORS:
We may release health information to a coroner or health examiner. This may be necessary, for example, to identify a deceased person or determine the cause of death. We may also release health information to funeral directors, as necessary to carry out their duties.
NATIONAL SECURITY, PROTECTIVE SERVICES FOR THE PRESIDENT AND OTHER INTELLIGENCE ACTIVITIES:
We may release health information about you to authorized federal officials for intelligence, counterintelligence, and other national security activities authorized by law, so they may provide protection to the President, other authorized persons or foreign heads of state, or to conduct special investigations.
Our primary purpose in collecting personal information is to provide you with a safe, smooth, efficient, and customized experience. This allows us to provide services and features that most likely meet your needs, and to customize our service to make your experience safer and easier. We only collect personal information about you that we consider necessary for achieving this purpose.
Though we make every effort to preserve user privacy, we may need to disclose personal information when required by law wherein we have a good-faith belief that such action is necessary to comply with a current judicial proceeding, a court order or legal process served on our Web site.
This Web site may contain links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every Web site that collects personally identifiable information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.
This Web site takes every precaution to protect our users' information. When users submit sensitive information via the Web site, their information is protected both online and off-line.
When our registration/order form asks users to enter sensitive information (such as credit card number and/or social security number), that information is encrypted and is protected with the best encryption software in the industry - SSL.
While we use SSL encryption to protect sensitive information online, we also do everything in our power to protect user-information off-line. All of our users' information, not just the sensitive information mentioned above, is restricted in our offices. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, a customer service representative) are granted access to personally identifiable information. Furthermore, ALL employees are kept up-to-date on our security and privacy practices. Finally, the servers that store personally identifiable information are in a secure environment.
NOTIFICATION OF CHANGES: