Notice of Privacy Practices

Introduction

This Notice describes how RelateCare and its affiliates (“RelateCare”) may use and disclose your protected health information in providing services as a business associate under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) to healthcare providers, consistent with the business associate agreement between RelateCare and your healthcare provider and HIPAA requirements. Protected health information is information about you that may identify you and that relates to your past, present or future physical or mental health or condition or past, present or future payment for health care.

Questions and Additional Information

If you have any questions or want additional information about the Notice or the policies and procedures described in the Notice, please contact your healthcare provider or RelateCare using the contact information provided at the end of this Notice.

RelateCare’s Responsibilities

RelateCare is required by law to ensure that its uses and disclosures of protected health information and other actions are consistent with the privacy policies of its healthcare provider clients as set out in the provider’s notice of privacy practices and to maintain the privacy of your protected health information. RelateCare is providing you with this Notice setting forth RelateCare’s privacy practices with respect to your protected health information. Please also consult your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.

Typical Uses and Disclosures of Protected

Health Information

This section describes typical ways in which RelateCare is permitted or required to use or disclose your protected health information, including under certain circumstances, using or disclosing your protected health information to assist your healthcare providers in their payment activities or health care operations. The descriptions include illustrative examples. The descriptions and examples are not exhaustive. They do not specify all types of uses or disclosures which can be made for each category.

Treatment

So that you receive appropriate treatment and care, your healthcare provider and RelateCare may use your protected health information to coordinate or manage your health care services. RelateCare may disclose your protected health information to a health care provider who renders treatment on your behalf. For example, RelateCare may speak to you about your overall health condition in connection with treatment for an injury.

Payment and Health Care Operations

RelateCare may use and disclose your protected health information for all activities that are included within the definitions of “payment” and “health care operations” under the HIPAA’s privacy rules. These definitions are briefly explained below.

  • RelateCare may use or disclose your protected health information to fulfill its responsibilities relating to payment for healthcare services. For example, RelateCare may provide information about you to your health insurance plan so it will pay for services provided by your healthcare provider.

 

  • Health Care Operations. RelateCare may use or disclose your protected health information to provide services to your healthcare provider, improve your care, and contact you when necessary. For example, RelateCare may use your protected health information to manage your treatment and services by your healthcare provider.

Business Associates

RelateCare may subcontract with third-party service providers (known as “subcontractor business associates”) to perform various services on its behalf. Typically, these services come within the definitions of “payment” and “health care operations” discussed above. To perform these services, subcontractor business associates will receive, create, maintain, use or disclose protected health information, but only after the business associates agree in writing to appropriately safeguard your protected health information.

Others Involved in Your Health Care

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information to a friend or family member that is involved in your care or payment for your health care, unless you object or request a restriction (in accordance with the process described below under the heading “Right to Request Restrictions”), subject to your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.

Disclosures to You

RelateCare is required to disclose to you or your personal representative most of your protected health information when you request access to this information, consistent with your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.

Notification of a Breach

Consistent with the terms of RelateCare’s agreement with your healthcare provider, RelateCare is required to notify you (or its healthcare provider client will notify you, if applicable) in the event that RelateCare (or one of RelateCare’s subcontractor business associates) discovers a breach of your unsecured protected health information, as defined by the HIPAA’s privacy rules.

Other Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information

This section describes ways in which RelateCare is permitted or required to use or disclose your protected health information that are expected to occur less frequently than those described in the preceding section. As in the preceding section, the descriptions and examples are not exhaustive.

Required by Law

RelateCare may use or disclose your protected health information to the extent required by federal, state or local law.

Lawsuits and Administrative Proceedings

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information in the course of any judicial or administrative proceeding or in response to an order of a court or administrative tribunal, consistent with the terms of RelateCare’s agreement with your healthcare provider. RelateCare may also disclose your protected health information in response to a subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process if efforts have been made to notify you or a protective order is obtained.

Workers’ Compensation

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information to comply with workers’ compensation laws and other similar laws or programs that provide benefits for work-related injuries or illnesses.

Disclosures to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

RelateCare is required to disclose your protected health information to the Secretary of the United States Department of Health and Human Services when the Secretary is investigating or determining compliance with the Privacy Rule.

Although they are unlikely to ever apply to RelateCare:

Health Oversight Activities

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law.

Abuse or Neglect

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information to a government authority that is authorized by law to receive reports of abuse, neglect or domestic violence.

To Avert a Serious Threat to Health or Safety

RelateCare may disclose your protected health information if disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the health or safety of a person or the public.

Uses and Disclosures of Your Protected Health Information Pursuant to an Authorization

Uses and disclosures of your protected health information that are not described above will be made only with your written authorization. There are special rules requiring your written authorization for disclosures involving psychotherapy notes, marketing and the sale of protected health information.

If you provide RelateCare with an authorization, you may revoke the authorization in writing, and this revocation will be effective for future uses and disclosures of protected health information. However, the revocation will not be effective for information that RelateCare has already used or disclosed in reliance on the authorization.

Your Rights

The following is a description of your rights with respect to your protected health information.

Right to Request Restrictions

You have the right to request a restriction on RelateCare’s uses and disclosures of protected health information about you for treatment, payment or health care operations. You also have the right to request a limit on disclosures of your protected health information to family members or friends who are involved in your care or the payment for your health care or for notification purposes. For example, you could ask that RelateCare not use or disclose information about a surgery that you had.  You must make any such request in writing to your healthcare provider.  Such request must be consistent with your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.  Please consult your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices for more information about such restrictions and the process for requesting restrictions.

Right to Request Access

You have the right to inspect and copy certain protected health information. Your request must be submitted in writing to your healthcare provider. Such request must be consistent with your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.  Please consult your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices for more information about such requests and the process for such requests.

Right to Request an Amendment

You have the right to request an amendment of your protected health information held by RelateCare if you believe that information is incorrect or incomplete. Your request must be submitted in writing to your healthcare provider. Such request must be consistent with your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.  Please consult your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices for more information about such requests and the process for such requests.

Right to Request an Accounting

You have the right to request an accounting of certain disclosures RelateCare has made of your protected health information. Your request must be submitted in writing to your healthcare provider. Such request must be consistent with your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices.  Please consult your healthcare provider’s notice of privacy practices for more information about such requests and the process for such requests.

Changes to This Notice

RelateCare reserves the right to change the provisions of this Notice and make the new provisions effective for all protected health information that it maintains (including protected health information created or received prior to the effective date of the change).

Security

RelateCare uses appropriate safeguards to prevent use and/or disclosure of protected health information (other than as allowed by its business associate agreement with the healthcare providers or by law).  RelateCare complies with HIPAA’s requirements governing the use of administrative, physical, and technical safeguards that reasonably and appropriately protect the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of electronic protected health information that RelateCare receives, maintains, or transmits on behalf of its healthcare provider clients.

Effective Date

This Notice of Privacy Practices is effective September 1, 2018.

Contact Information – HIPAA Privacy Contact

To request additional information or file a complaint with RelateCare’s HIPAA Privacy Contact, please contact:

____________________________

RelateCare

10000 Cedar Ave, Cleveland, OH 44106

3615 Superior Ave E, Ste. 4406C

Cleveland, OH 44114

 

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