Understanding Your Health Record/Information
Each time you are admitted to a long term care facility or visit a hospital, a record of your visit is made. Typically, this record contains your symptoms, examinations, test results, diagnoses, treatments and care plan. This information, often referred to as your health or medical record, serves as a:
Although your health record is the physical property of Bridges Care Community the information belongs to you. You have the right to:
Bridges Care Community is required to:
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 the facility administrator or director of nursing at phone number (218) 784-5500.
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you can file a complaint with the facility administrator or director of nursing or with the Office of Civil Rights. There will be no retaliation for filing a complaint.
USES AND DISCLOSURES OF HEALTH INFORMATION
Uses and Examples of Disclosures for Treatment, Payment and Health Operations
We will use your health information for treatment. Treatment means providing, coordinating, and managing health care and related services including, coordination or consultation with and, in some instances, referral to third parties such as other health care providers.
For example: Information obtained by a nurse, physician or other member of your healthcare team will be recorded in your record and used to determine the course of your treatment that should work best for you. Your physician will document in your record his or her expectations of the members of your healthcare team. Members of your healthcare team will then record the actions they took and their observations. In that way, the physician will know how you are responding to treatment.
We will use your health information for payment related activities including, but not limited to, eligibility determination, claims processing, utilization review activities, and collection activities.
For example: A bill may be sent to a third-party payer, such as Medicare. This information on or accompanying the bill may include information that identifies you, as well as your diagnosis, treatments and supplies used.
We will use your health information for health care operations including quality assessment and improvement activities; evaluation and training of health care professionals and staff; health insurance related activities; auditing functions; planning and development; and administrative functions such as activities relating to compliance with federal regulations protecting the privacy of your health information.
For example: Members of the nursing staff or members of the Quality Council Committee may use information in your health record to assess the care and outcomes 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 healthcare and service we provide.
There are some services provided in our organization through contacts with business associates. Examples include laboratory services, x-ray services and pharmacy. When these services are contracted, we may disclose your health information to our business associate so that they can perform the job we've asked them to do and bill your third-party payer for services rendered. To protect your health information, however, we require the business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.
Unless you notify us that you object, we will use your name and location in the facility for directory purposes. This information may be provided to members of the clergy and to other people who ask for you by name.
We may use or disclose information to notify or assist in notifying a family member, personal representative or another person responsible for your care, of your location and general condition.
Communication With Family
Health professionals, using their best judgement, 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 or payment related to your care.
We may include your name in a facility publication such as a newsletter, birthday list, door name plate, religious listing etc. to recognize important events, accomplishments or days that involve you. We may use your name for fundraising or marketing events or promotions.
Other Uses and Disclosures
Under certain circumstances, we may also use or disclose health information without your consent or authorization. Those circumstances and the rules with which we must comply when making such disclosures are set forth in 45 CFR 164.512 and the HITECH Act. Permitted purposes or circumstances for disclosure include the following: to comply with a state or federal law; to cooperate with authorized agencies and authorities carrying out public health activities including, but not limited to, activities related to preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability, preventing or responding to child abuse or neglect, and activities related to the safety of items regulated by the FDA; to fulfill reporting requirements related to victims of abuse, neglect or domestic violence; for health oversight activities including, but not limited to, audits, investigations, inspections, and other activities necessary for appropriate oversight of health care systems and services; for judicial and administrative proceedings; for law enforcement purposes; to coroners, medical examiners and funeral directors who require such information to carry out their duties; to organ procurement organizations or related entities as necessary to facilitate donation and transplantation; for research purposes; to avert a serious threat to health or safety; for certain other specialized government functions; to comply with workers' compensation or similar programs established by law and providing benefits for work-related injuries or illness.
Effective Date: 2/14/2003
Reviewed Date: 3/29/2010