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privacy policyThis notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to the information. Please review it carefully.

Understanding Your Health Record / Information:

Each time you visit a hospital, physician, or other health care provider, a record of your visit is made. Typically, this record contains your symptoms, examination and test results, diagnoses, treatment and a plan for future care of treatment. This information, often referred to as your health or medical record, serves as a basis for planning your care and treatment and serves as a means of communication among the many health professionals who contribute to your care. Understanding what is in your record and how your health information is used helps you to ensure its accuracy, better understand who, what, when, where and why others may access your health information, and make more informed decisions when authorizing disclosure to others.

Your Health Information Rights:

Unless otherwise required by law, your health record is the physical property of the health care practitioner or facility that complied it, but the information belongs to you. You have the right to request a restriction on certain uses and disclosures of your information and request amendments to your health record. This includes the right to obtain a paper copy of the notice of information practices of you health information, request communications of your health information by alternative means or at alternative locations, revoke your authorization to use or disclose health information except to the extent that action has already been taken.

Our Responsibilities:

This organization is required to maintain the privacy of your health information. In addition, we must provide you with a notice as to our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to information we collect and maintain about you if requested. This organization must abide by the terms of this notice, notify you if we are unable to agree to a requested restriction, accommodate reasonable requests you may have to communicate health information by alternative means or at alternative locations. We reserve the right to change our practices and to make the new provisions effective for all protected health information we maintain. Should our information practice change, we will make it available in our office and on our web site. We will mail you a copy if you make a request in writing. We will not use or disclose your health information without your authorization, except as described in this notice.

For More Information Or To Report A Problem:

If you have questions and would like additional information, you may contact our Office Manager at (410) 224-2228. If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you have the right to file a complaint with the Secretary of Health and Human Services without retaliation.

EXAMPLES OF DISCLOSURES FOR TREATMENT, PAYMENT AND HEALTH OPERATIONS:

Treatment: For example: Information obtained by a health care practitioner will be recorded in your record and used to determine the course of treatment that should work best for you. Members of your health care team will then record the actions they took and their observations. We may also provide your other practitioners with copies of various reports that should assist them in treating you.

Payments & Billing: For example: A bill may be sent to you or a third-party payer. This information on or accompanying the bill may include information that identifies you, as well as your diagnosis, procedures and supplies used. We will use your health information for regular health operations: For example: Members of our medical staff, risk/quality improvement manager or quality improvement team may use information in your health record to assess the care and outcome in your case and others like it. This information will then be used in an effort to continually improve the quality and effectiveness of the health care services we provide.

Business Associates: There may be some services provided in our organization through contracts with Business Associates. An example would be a copy service we might use when making copies of your health record. When these services are contracted, we may disclose some or all of your health information to our Business Associate so that they can perform the job we've asked them to do. To protect your health information, however, we require all such Business Associates to agree to appropriately safeguard your information.

Notification: We may use or disclose information to notify or assist in notifying a family member, other relative, close personal representative, or another person responsible for your care, your location and general condition. We may also leave messages for you on answering machines at phone numbers you have specified regarding issues such as appointment times, test results, medical questions you've directed to us or billing information.

Communication With Family: Health professionals using their best judgment may disclose to a family member, other relative, close personal friend or any other person you identify, health information relevant to that person's involvement in your care of payment related to your care.

Research: We may disclose information to researchers when a review board has reviewed the research proposal and established protocols to ensue the privacy of your health information.

Funeral Directors: We may disclose health information to funeral directors consistent with applicable law to carry out their duties.

Organ Procurement Organizations: Consistent with applicable law, we may disclose health information to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement, banking or transplantation of organs for the purpose of tissue donation and transplant.

Marketing: We may contact you to provide appointment reminders or information about treatment alternative or other health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.

Fund Raising: We may contact you as part of a fund-raising effort.

Food and Drug Administration (FDA): As required by law, we may disclose to the FDA health information relative to adverse events with respect to food, supplements, product and product defects, or post marketing surveillance information to enable product recalls, repairs or replacement.

Workers Compensation: We may disclose health information to the extent authorized by and to the extent necessary to comply with laws relating to workers compensation or other similar programs.

Public Health: As required by law, we may disclose your health information to public health or legal authorities charged with tracking birth and deaths, as well as with preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability.

Correctional Institutions: Should you be an inmate of a corrections institution, we may disclose to the institution or agents thereof, health information necessary for your health and the health and safety of other individuals. An inmate does not have the right to the Notice of Privacy Practices.

Legal Issues and Law Enforcement: We may disclose health information for law enforcement purposes or as required by law or in response to a valid subpoena. We may also disclose information to attorneys representing us in the case of health liability or malpractice issues.

Notice of Privacy Practices: This notice will be prominently posted in the office where registration occurs. Patients will be provided a hard copy if they so desire and the notice will be maintained and/or updated on our web site for you to print.

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