Notice of Privacy Practices
The Crafted Path, LLC
EFFECTIVE DATE OF THIS NOTICE -This notice went into effect on 9/13/2021
NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW HEALTH INFORMATION MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.
I. IT IS MY LEGAL DUTY TO SAFEGUARD YOUR PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION (PHI). I am required by law to:
Maintain the privacy and security of your protected health information (“PHI”). PHI constitutes information created or noted by me that can be used to identify you. It contains data about your past, present, or future health or condition, the provision of health care services to you, or the payment for such health care.
Inform you if a breach occurs that may have compromised the privacy and security of your information.
Give you this notice of my legal duties and privacy practices with respect to health information. This Notice must explain when, why, and how I would use and/or disclose your PHI. Use of PHI means when I share, apply, utilize, examine, or analyze information within my practice; PHI is disclosed when I release, transfer, give, or otherwise reveal it to a third party outside my practice.
Follow the terms of the notice that is currently in effect.
With some exceptions, I may not use or disclose more of your PHI than is necessary to accomplish the purpose for which the use or disclosure is made; however, I am always legally required to follow the privacy practices described in this Notice. Please note that I reserve the right to change the terms of this Notice and my privacy policies at any time as permitted by law. Any changes will apply to PHI already on file with me. Before I make any important changes to my privacy policies, I will immediately change this Notice and post a new copy of it on my website. The new Notice will be available upon request and on my website at www.thecraftedpath.com.
II. HOW I MAY USE AND DISCLOSE HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU:
I will use and disclose your PHI for many different reasons. Some of the uses or disclosures will require your prior written authorization; others, however, will not. Below, you will find the different categories of uses and disclosures along with some examples.
A. Uses and disclosures related to treatment, payment, or healthcare operations do not require your prior written consent. I may use and disclose your PHI without your consent for the following reasons:
For Treatment – I may disclose your PHI to physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, and other licensed health care providers who provide you with health care services or are otherwise involved in your care. For example, if a psychiatrist is treating you, I may disclose PHI to him/her to coordinate care.
For Payment – I may use and disclose your PHI to bill and collect payment for the treatment and services I provided you. Example: I might send your PHI to your insurance company or health plan in order to get payment for the health care services that I have provided to you. I could also provide your PHI to business associates, such as billing companies, claims processing companies, and others that process health care claims for my office.
For Health Care Operations -I may disclose your PHI to facilitate the efficient and correct operation of my practice, such as quality control or to make sure that I am in compliance with applicable laws. For example, I may provide your PHI to my attorneys, accountants, consultants and others to ensure the quality of services I provide or the practice’s compliance with applicable laws.
Other disclosures – Your consent is not required if you need emergency treatment, provided that I attempt to get your consent after treatment is rendered. In the event that I try to get you consent but you are unable to communicate with me (i.e. you are unconscious or in severe pain), and in the exercise of my professional judgment, I think that you would consent to such treatment if you could or that it is otherwise in you best interest, I may disclose your PHI.
B. Disclosures for treatment purposes are not limited to the minimum necessary standard. Because therapists and other health care providers need access to the full record and/or full and complete information in order to provide quality care. The word “treatment” includes, among other things, the coordination and management of health care providers with a third party, consultations between health care providers and referrals of a patient for health care from one health care provider to another.
III. YOU HAVE THE RIGHT AND THE CHOICE TO INFORM US OF YOUR PREFERENCES FOR USE AND DISCLOSURE OF YOUR PHI IN SOME SITUATIONS.
- Psychotherapy Notes. I do keep “psychotherapy notes” as that term is defined in 45 CFR § 164.501, and any use or disclosure of such notes requires your Authorization unless the use or disclosure is:
- Required by law and the use or disclosure is limited to the requirements of such law.
- For my use in treating you.
- For my use in training or supervising mental health practitioners to help them improve their skills in group, joint, family, or individual counseling or therapy.
- For my use in defending myself in legal proceedings instituted by you.
- For use by the Secretary of Health and Human Services to investigate my compliance with HIPAA.
- Required by law for certain health oversight activities pertaining to the originator of the psychotherapy notes.
- Required by a coroner who is performing duties authorized by law.
- Required to help avert a serious threat to the health and safety of others.
- Marketing Purposes. As a psychotherapist, I will not use or disclose your PHI for marketing purposes.
- Sale of PHI. As a psychotherapist, I will not sell your PHI in the regular course of my business.
- Fundraising Purposes. As a Psychotherapist, I will not use or disclose your PHI for fundraising purposes.
IV. CERTAIN USES AND DISCLOSURES DO NOT REQUIRE YOUR AUTHORIZATION. Subject to certain limitations in the law, I can use and disclose your PHI without your Authorization for the following reasons:
- When disclosure is required by state or federal law, and the use or disclosure complies with and is limited to the relevant requirements of such law.
- For public health activities, including reporting suspected child, elder, or dependent adult abuse, or preventing or reducing a serious threat to anyone’s health or safety, including your own health and safety.
- For health oversight activities including audits and investigations.
- For judicial and administrative proceedings, including responding to a court or administrative order pursuant to its lawful authority.
- For law enforcement purposes, including but not limited to reporting crimes occurring on my premises and disclosures required by a search warrant lawfully issued to a governmental law enforcement agency.
- To coroners or medical examiners, when such individuals are performing duties authorized by law.
- For research purposes, including studying and comparing the mental health of patients who received one form of therapy versus those who received another form of therapy for the same condition.
- Specialized government functions, including, ensuring the proper execution of military missions; protecting the President of the United States; conducting intelligence or counter-intelligence operations; or, helping to ensure the safety of those working within or housed in correctional institutions.
- For workers’ compensation purposes. Although my preference is to obtain an Authorization from you, I may provide your PHI in order to comply with workers’ compensation laws.
- Appointment reminders and health related benefits or services. I may use and disclose your PHI to contact you to remind you that you have an appointment with me. I may also use and disclose your PHI to tell you about treatment alternatives, or other health care services or benefits that I offer.
V. CERTAIN USES AND DISCLOSURES REQUIRE YOU TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO OBJECT.
Disclosures to family, friends, or others. I may provide your PHI to a family member, friend, or other person that you indicate is involved in your care or the payment for your health care, unless you object in whole or in part. The opportunity to consent may be obtained retroactively in emergency situations.
VI. YOU HAVE THE FOLLOWING RIGHTS WITH RESPECT TO YOUR PHI:
The Right to Request Limits on Uses and Disclosures of Your PHI. You have the right to ask me not to use or disclose certain PHI for treatment, payment, or health care operations purposes. I am not required to agree to your request. If I do agree with your request, I will put those limits in writing and abide by them except in emergency situations. You do not have the right to limit the uses and disclosures that I am legally required or permitted to make.
The Right to Request Restrictions for Out-of-Pocket Expenses Paid for In Full. You have the right to request restrictions on disclosures of your PHI to health plans for payment or health care operations purposes if the PHI pertains solely to a health care item or a health care service that you have paid for out-of-pocket in full.
The Right to Choose How I Send PHI to You. You have the right to ask me to contact you in a specific way (for example, home or office phone) or to send mail to a different address, and I will agree to all reasonable requests.
The Right to See and Get Copies of Your PHI. Other than “psychotherapy notes,” you have the right to get an electronic or paper copy of your medical record and other information that I have about you. I will provide you with a copy of your record, or a summary of it, if you agree to receive a summary, within 30 days of receiving your written request, and I will charge a fee of $.25 per page for doing so.
The Right to Get a List of the Disclosures I Have Made. You have the right to request a list of instances in which I have disclosed your PHI. The list will not include uses or disclosures of your PHI for purposes of treatment, payment, health care operations, or for which you provided me with an Authorization. I will respond to your request for an accounting of disclosures within 60 days of receiving your request. The list I will give you will include disclosures made in the last six years unless you request a shorter time. I will provide the list to you at no charge, but if you make more than one request in the same year, I will charge you a reasonable cost based fee for each additional request.
The Right to Correct or Update Your PHI. If you believe that there is a mistake in your PHI, or that a piece of important information is missing from your PHI, you have the right to request that I correct the existing information or add the missing information. I may say “no” to your request, but I will tell you why in writing within 60 days of receiving your request.
The Right to Get a Paper or Electronic Copy of this Notice. You have the right to get a paper copy of this Notice at any time, even if you have agreed to receive it electronically.
VII. HOW TO COMPLAIN ABOUT MY PRIVACY PRACTICES. If, in your opinion, I may have violated your privacy rights, or if you object to a decision I made about access to your PHI, you are entitled to file a complaint with the person listed in Section VIII below. You may also send a written complaint to the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services at 200 Independence Avenue S.W. Washington, D.C. 20201.If you file a complaint about my privacy practices, I will take no retaliatory action against you.
VIII. PERSON TO CONTACT FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THIS NOTICE OR TO COMPLAIN ABOUT MY PRIVACY PRACTICES. If you have any questions about this notice or would like to know how to file a complaint with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, please contact me at this office: Hazel Hooven, MS, LMHC, LPC; (256)631-3650; [email protected]; 600 Boulevard South SW, Suite 104; Huntsville, AL 35802.
IX. NOTIFICATIONS OF BREACHES. In the case of a breach, Hazel Hooven, MS, LMHC, LPC is required to notify each affected individual whose unsecured PHI has been compromised. Even if such a breach was caused by a business associate, Hazel Hooven, MS, LMHC, LPC is ultimately responsible for providing the notification directly or via the business associate. Hazel Hooven, MS, LMHC, LPC bears the ultimate burden of proof to demonstrate that all notifications were given or that the impermissible use or disclosure of PHI did not constitute a breach and must maintain supporting documentation, including documentation pertaining to the risk assessment.
X. PHI AFTER DEATH. Subject to state and federal law, I may disclose a deceased individual’s PHI to family members and non-family members who were involved in the care or payment for healthcare of the descendent prior to death. The disclosure must be limited to PHI relevant to such care or payment and cannot be inconsistent with any prior expressed preference of the deceased individual.
Acknowledgement of Receipt of Privacy Notice required in the Client Portal.