Privacy Practices: How We Use Your Medical Information
In response to growing concerns about keeping health information private, Congress passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). The legislation includes a privacy rule that creates national standards to protect individuals' personal health information. Most health-care providers in the country were required to implement these standards by April 14, 2003.
Dr. Adrian Ma has a successful practice of protecting patients' privacy and maintaining confidentiality. We are implementing additional methods to further protect patients' medical information in the electronic age and are fully compliant with HIPAA requirements. The HIPAA privacy rule does not significantly change the way Dr. Adrian Ma had been protecting medical information.
While it is true that many employees involved in a patient's visit -- from registration through patient care and billing -- have access to medical information, Dr. Adrian Ma limits that access to only the pertinent medical information those employees need to do their jobs. We believe that appropriate access to your medical record by members of your care team enables us to provide you with the most comprehensive care available.
Patients' privacy rights and Dr. Adrian Ma's privacy practices are outlined in a document called the "Notice of Privacy Practices." Patients are given a copy when they make their first appointment and are asked to sign a form that acknowledges they have received the information. Once they have received the document and signed the acknowledgment form, they will not need to receive another copy -- or sign another acknowledgment -- unless Dr. Adrian Ma makes major changes in its privacy practices.
Dr. Adrian Ma takes seriously its responsibility for protecting patients' medical information. Providing you with the "Notice of Privacy Practices" and having you sign the acknowledgment that you received a copy are part of Dr. Adrian Ma's efforts to comply with the rules mandated by HIPAA. Dr. Adrian Ma is participating in this effort along with most other health-care providers in the United States. Compliance with the HIPAA privacy rule is important to continuing our tradition of patient confidentiality.