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Carolina Center for Recovery and associates are dedicated to providing you with the highest quality mental and behavioral healthcare. We value your privacy and are committed to maintaining that privacy by acting in accordance with all applicable laws. This notice, our “Notice of Privacy Practices,” describes our duties and your rights and how they are protected under Federal Law. Protected Health Information (PHI) refers to any information about you and your health, such as demographics, identifiable features, past or present medical conditions, the utilization of healthcare services, and the past, present, and future payment for using those healthcare services.
Our Uses and Disclosures
Disclosures and uses regarding your PHI may be authorized, required, or permitted. The categories listed below describe the ways in which we use and disclose your PHI.
Treatment Staff and Personnel. We may disclose or use information among personnel who need the information in order to complete their duties of providing a diagnosis, treatment, or referral for treatment if such communication is: (i.) maintained within the treatment center; or (ii.) held between the treatment center and Carolina Center for Recovery. As such, our staff, doctors, nurses, and therapists will use your PHI throughout the course of your treatment. Your PHI may also be used in your billing statements and in connection with any charges, tracking, or credits to your account. Your PHI will be required to check for insurance coverage eligibility and to prepare claims for your insurance company when needed. We may use and disclose your PHI if required to conduct our healthcare services and to carry out tasks related to our business and care, including the process of licensing and accreditation.
Secretary of Health and Human Services. As required by federal law, we must disclose PHI to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services when he or she is investigating or determining our compliance with HIPAA.
Business Associates. Business associates who are contracted by Carolina Center for Recovery to provide services on our behalf may require the receipt, use, or disclosure of PHI. All business associates must agree to: (i.) protect the privacy of your PHI; (ii.) use the information only for purposes directly related to the business engagement; (iii.) be bound by 42 CFR Part 2; and (iv.) resist any efforts to obtain access to patient records in judicial proceedings, unless permitted by law.
Crimes on Premises. Information may be disclosed to law enforcement officers if that information is related to a crime committed on the premise, a crime committed against our personnel, or a threat to commit a crime.
Reports of Suspected Child Abuse and Neglect. We may disclose information that is required under state law in incidents of suspected child abuse or neglect. We may not disclose original patient records, including those for civil or criminal proceedings that arise out of reported or suspected child abuse and neglect without the consent of the patient.
Court Order. If certain regulatory requirements are met, we may disclose information that is required by court order.
Emergency Situations. In the event of a medical emergency, we may disclose the necessary information required for your care.
Research. We may use and disclose your information for research if certain requirements are met, such as approval by an Institutional Review Board.
Audit and Evaluation Activities. We can disclose your information to people conducting audit or evaluation activities if the person collecting the information agrees to certain restrictions on the disclosure of information.
Reporting of Death. We may disclose your information related to the cause of death to a public health authority that is authorized to receive such information.
AUTHORIZATION TO USE OR DISCLOSE PHI
Other than in the instances stated above, we will not use or provide your PHI with anyone without your written authorization. We will not use or disclose therapy notes or PHI for marketing purposes unless you have signed an authorization. We may refer you to another treatment facility and provide your PHI at your discretion, we will never sell your information. If you authorize us to use or disclose your PHI you have a right to revoke that authorization and stop future uses of your PHI at any time. Your revocation will not affect any use or disclosures permitted by your authorization while it was in effect.
You have specific rights when it comes to your health information. This section will explain your rights and our responsibilities to help you keep those rights.
You will get an electronic or paper copy of your medical record.
You can request an electronic or paper copy of your medical record and any other information we have about you. All you have to do is ask.
We will provide a copy or a summary of your health information, usually within 30 days of your request. We may charge a reasonable, cost-based fee.
You may ask us to correct your medical record.
You can ask us to correct health information about you that you think is incorrect or incomplete.
We may say “no” to your request, but we’ll tell you why in writing within 60 days of the request.
You can request confidential communications.
You can ask us to contact you in a specific way (for example, home or office phone) or to send mail to a different address.
We will say “yes” to all reasonable requests.
Ask us to limit what we use or share
You may ask us not to share or use your health information for treatment, payment, or operations. Although we are not required to agree to the request, we will say “yes” if the request is reasonable and will not affect your care.
If you pay for a service or healthcare item out-of-pocket in full, you can ask us not to share that information for the purpose of payment or our operations with your health insurer. We will say “no” if a law requires us to share that information.
You can ask for a list of the times we’ve shared your health information for six years prior to the date you ask, who we shared it with, and why. We will say “yes” to this request.
We will include all the disclosures except for those about treatment, payment, and healthcare operations, and certain other disclosures (such as any you asked us to make). We’ll provide one accounting a year for free but will charge a reasonable, cost-based fee if you ask for another one within 12 months.
Get a copy of this privacy notice
You may request a paper copy of this privacy notice at any time, even if you have already agreed to the notice electronically. We will provide your paper copy in a prompt fashion.
Choose someone to act on your behalf
If someone is your legal guardian or you have given someone medical power of attorney, that individual can make choices about your health information on your behalf.
We will make sure the person has this authority and can act for you before we take any action.
You should file a complaint if you feel your rights are violated.
You can complain if you feel we have violated your rights by contacting us using the information on page 1.
You can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) by sending a letter to 200 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20201, calling 1-877-696-6775, or visiting www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/complaints/.
We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.
You can tell us your choices about what we share regarding certain health information. If you have a specific preference about how or with whom we share your information in the situations listed below, reach out to us. We can come up with a different plan for you.
In these cases, you have both the right and choice to tell us to:
Share information with your family, close friends, or others involved in your care
Share information in a disaster relief situation
Include your information in a hospital directory
If you are not able to tell us your preference, for example, if you are unconscious, we may go ahead and share your information if we believe it is in your best interest. We may also share your information when needed to lessen a serious and imminent threat to health or safety.
In these cases we never share your information unless you give us written permission:
In the case of fundraising:
We may contact you for fundraising efforts, but you can tell us not to contact you again.
How else can we use or share your health information?
We are allowed or required to share your information in other ways. These events usually involve circumstances that contribute to the public good, such as public health and research. We have to meet many conditions in the law before we can share your information for these purposes. For more information see www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/understanding/consumers/index.html.
Changes to the Terms of this Notice
We can change the terms of this notice, and the changes will apply to all the information we have about you. The new notice will be available upon request, in our office, and on our website.