NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION.
PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.
THE PRIVACY OF YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION IS IMPORTANT TO US.
OUR HIPAA LEGAL REQUIREMENT
Maintaining the privacy of your personal health care information is required by state and federal law. It is the responsibility of each dental practice to provide notice to all patients about how private information is handled, how it is used, the circumstances under which it is disclosed, and how you can obtain access. The privacy of your health care information is important. We make sure this information is protected and used correctly.
We are highly concerned with how your private health information is handled. By law, our practice is required to maintain your privacy and give you notice concerning the measures we take to complete this requirement. Once a notice is given, it remains in effect until replaced with a new privacy statement.
Although our practice has the right to change this notice, if any significant changes take place, the patients will be notified with the updated information. The official Privacy Statement is also available by request at any time by contacting our office.
How We Disclose and Use Health Information
Your privacy is important to the providers of this practice. Some circumstances necessitate the use and disclosure of your health information, and these circumstances are outlined and defined for your understanding. Your private information will not be used for any marketing purposes without your permission.
- Other providers. To coordinate your care, it is sometimes necessary to disclose health information to other healthcare providers who treat you.
- Billing services. To set you up on our billing system to receive payment for the services you receive.
- Practice improvements. Healthcare practices are routinely assessed for areas of improvement, and ours are evaluated for competency and proper credentials. Improvement plans involve quality control reviews and activities related to licensing, accreditation, and training. These healthcare operations activities may include the disclosure of patient healthcare information.
- Approved individuals. Your health information is automatically kept private from other individuals. You can give permission to share your information with anyone you have authorized by writing. Your authorization can be removed at any time by request. Without written authorization, we are unable to give anyone access to your information, in exception for the cases listed in this notice.
- Caregivers. In some instances, caregivers, next of kin, or other representatives appointed to take care of your health could receive private health information as it pertains to your location and health condition, or in the case of your death. If you are available and able to give consent, your approval will be requested before any information is released. If you are incapacitated and unable to give consent, the practice will use professional judgment and inform caregivers and family members using only the specific information necessary for the caregivers to fulfill their duty.
- Suspected abuse or neglect. For your protection and safety, if abuse, neglect, domestic violence, or other crimes against you are suspected, the practice may disclose necessary private information to the proper authorities.
- Legal requirements. When required by law, the use or disclosure of your private health information may be needed.
- National security. On certain occasions, the military, federal authorities, or national security officials may require disclosure of private health records for intelligence or national security concerns. Patients who are inmates may have information disclosed to correctional facilities or officials under certain specific circumstances.
- Future appointments. Appointment reminders, such as email messages, letters, or voicemail messages, may include some of your personal health information.
The Rights of Our Patients
As a patient, you have certain defined privacy rights.
- Health record access. You may request access to your health record at any time and specify the method of delivery. We will use the format you request unless we cannot practicably do so.
- Report on Disclosure Accounting. You may request a listing of any time your health information has been disclosed to another party. You have the right to receive a list of instances in which we or our business associates disclosed your health information for purposes other than treatment, payment, healthcare operations and certain other activities with the understanding that we may not be able to grant the full request.
- Restricted Access. You may request additional restrictions on access to your records without a guarantee that the request can be granted.
- Alternative Communication. You have the right to request that we communicate with you about your health information by alternative means or to alternative locations. (You must make your request in writing). Your request must specify the alternative means or location, and provide satisfactory explanation how payments will be handled under the alternative means or location you request.
- Amendment. You have the right to request that we amend your health information. (Your request must be in writing, and it must explain why the information should be amended.) We may deny your request under certain circumstances.
- Health record changes. If you disagree with your health record, you may request an amendment to your files.
- Delivery of notice. You may request a hard copy of this notice at any time.
Questions and Complaints
If you are concerned that this practice may have violated your privacy rights, you can contact the practice directly or request contact information to get in touch with the United States Department of Health and Human Services to file a complaint.
You will not be retaliated against for filing a privacy complaint. If you have any questions about your privacy rights listed in this notice, questions about dental hygiene benefits, or general questions about the practice, contact Delaware Smiles Center for further information.
201 Carter Drive Suite A
Middletown, DE 19709