NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO YOUOR MEDICAL INFORMATION
PLEASE REVIEW THIS INFORMATION CAREFULLY
Our Commitment to Your Privacy:
Riverwood Group, LLC Treatment Centers are dedicated to maintaining the privacy of your identifiable health information. During your treatment, we will develop certain records pertaining to the services you are receiving. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) require we maintain the confidentiality of your identifiable health information. We are mandated by law to adhere to the terms of the notice of privacy practices we have in effect at the time.
The relationship among alcohol and drug abuse treatment centers and their patients is a complex one. Many disciplines are directly involved including Doctors, Nurses, Counselors and Social Workers. Indirectly, insurance companies, outside laboratories, marketing concerns, research institutes, our legal system, and regulatory agencies are also involved. Although some of these entities will not interact with patients directly, they all request specific information about an individual patient’s medical history. The sharing of an individual’s medical history among these groups is strictly regulated. A patient’s medical information is considered private.
How We May Use and Disclose your Identifiable Health Information
Your identifiable health information may be used and disclosed in identified situations. These situations include:
- Treatment Services: We will obtain certain health information in the course of your admissions and treatment services. This information will be used to facilitate the development of the most appropriate treatment plan and direction of medical services for you. To deliver these services, we may disclose this information to other Treatment Center staff, or other individuals who are involved in your treatment efforts.
- Program Operations: We may use and disclose health information about you for administrative and operational purposes. These disclosures are necessary for our operations and to facilitate delivery of services to all patients of the program. For example, we may use your health information to review our treatment services and evaluate our performance in delivering quality services. We may combine your health information with the health information of others to evaluate and improve our services. Your protected health information may also be disclosed to others who are auditing this program, consistent with federal and state licensing laws. In all situations where others may have access to your health information, those individuals or business associates are required to complete an agreement to protect your confidentiality prior to accessing your health information.
- As Required by Law: We will use and disclose your health information when we are required to do so by federal or state law.
- National Security and Intelligence: We may disclose your health information to federal officials for intelligence and national security activities authorized by law.
- Release of Personal Health Information in Life-threatening Situations: In life-threatening situations, or where an individual’s condition or situation precludes the possibility of obtaining written consent, HIPAA guidelines allow for the release of pertinent medical information to the medical personnel responsible for the individual’s care without the patient’s authorization and without the authorization of the Chief Operational Officer or his or her designee, if obtaining such authorization would cause excessive delay in delivering treatment to the individual.
- Serious Threats to Health and Safety: We may use and disclose health information about you when necessary to prevent a serious threat to the safety and health of the public or any other person. Any disclosure would be made to the appropriate person(s) to help prevent the threat or to any specifically identified victims of a threat.
- Public Health Risks: We may disclose your health information for federal and state public health activities. These activities generally include:
- To report, prevent or control disease;
- To report child abuse and neglect, elder abuse and neglect, or domestic violence;
- To notify a person who may have been exposed to a disease or who may be at risk of spreading a disease.
Patient’s Right to Obtain Personal Health Files
Patients have a legal right to examine their case files. Although all patient files belong to the Treatment Center, a patient may submit a written request for and receive copies of any part of their file. In all circumstances, we keep the original. Should a patient request a copy of their file, we will notate this in their file, giving the date of the request, what is to be copied, and a signature for release by the patient and the signature of the patient making the request. Patients can dispute any information in their files they consider to be in error. Regardless if the patient is correct or not, we will notate the dispute in the file. Under normal circumstance, we have thirty days in which to forward the copy to the patient, or fourteen days in which to provide a written explanation for denial of the request. However, if their medical file is stored off site we have up to 60 days to comply.
Disclosure Requiring Prior Authorization
For disclosures requiring a properly executed authorization, that authorization must be in the possession of the Treatment Center before any disclosure will be made. A properly executed authorization must contain the following items:
- The entity making the disclosure. In our case Riverwood Group, LLC
- The name of the entity to receive the information
- The name of the patient who is the subject of the disclosure
- The purpose or need for the disclosure
- A description of how much and what kind of information will be disclosed.
- A statement to the effect the patient has the right to later revoke their authorization
- A statement to the effect that Riverwood reserves the ability to condition treatment, payment, enrollment or eligibility of benefits on the patient’s agreeing to sign the consent, or the consequences for the patient refusing to sign the consent
- The date event or condition upon which the consent expires if not previously revoked
- The signature of the patient
- The date on which the consent is signed
- Every authorization for release of information becomes part of the patient’s permanent record
Right to File a Complaint
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a written complaint with the Program Director. You may also file a complaint by contacting our Corporate Compliance Program at 1-877-592-5901.
You may also submit a written complaint to:
The Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services
200 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20210
NOTE: The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) does not supersede 42 CFR PART 2 - Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records.