Effective Date: March 18, 2015
The management of MustardSeed Health Care Services, LLC consider client health information sacrosanct and understand the importance of protecting this information and keeping it private. We want to assure our clients that their personal information will only be used for the purposes of achieving the best quality of care for them as outline in their plan of care and in line with the Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and other Maryland state and Federal laws.
For the purpose of this policy, please note the meaning of the following expressions;
“Health information��� means information about you or your child’s health care.
“Personal information” means health information and any other information that we have received while providing benefits to you or your child, such as your address and Social Security number.
Take note that, we have the right to change this notice at any time.
Clients Health Information
In providing health services, we may get health information from you, or other health care providers regarding health care services you have received and your insurance coverage, including health care claims and encounters. We also may get medical history that includes the results of tests and notes written by doctors and nurses, as well as your name, address and telephone number. Each time you receive care, a record of the visit by our health professionals is made. This record may include information such as notes about mental and physical condition, symptoms, test results, diagnoses, and treatment(s).
How we protect the confidentiality of personal information
We protect client health information by giving personal information about the client only to those employees who need to know that information to provide products or services. We keep all personal information safe and secure.
How we may use and disclose health information
By law we are able to use health information for “treatment,” “payment,” and �����health care operations.” Here are some examples, (the list does not include every reason that information can be given):
- For Treatment. We may give information to doctors, nurses, technicians, office staff or other personnel who provide services.
- For Payment. We may use and give others health information about the client when we need to decide on eligibility for coverage, coordinate care, review medical necessity, or review and respond to complaints. For example, while we work on getting authorization from insurance to provide services, we get personal information about the client to find out what services he/she is eligible for that are covered by his/her insurance.
- For Health Care Operations. We may use and give others the client’s personal information for our health care operations. That may include quality improvement activities; accreditation; responses to inquiries; appeals and review programs. It may also be used for health promotion; case management and care coordination; and general administrative activities. Sometimes it may be used for auditing; administering pharmaceutical programs; or in the facilitation of a sale, transfer or merger of all or a part of our organization with another organization. Our authorization form, which you or the client is asked to sign, usually includes these activities.
- Other permitted or required uses or disclosures. We may use or disclose health information about the client without permission for the following reasons, allowed by law:
- To comply with responsibilities to federal or state oversight agencies who oversee health care. For example, sharing information with State of Maryland Office of Health Care Quality (OHCQ) inspectors.
- To researchers where all procedures required by law have been taken to protect the confidentiality of the data.
- To comply with a court order or other lawful process.
- To persons providing services to us. They have to make sure that they will keep all information safe and secure.
- To let the client and authorized caregiver know about treatment alternatives or health-related benefits or services.
- Sometimes, we are allowed by federal and state law to give an agency health information about the client without authorization. An example would be information to protect victims of abuse or neglect, to avoid a serious threat to health or safety, to track diseases or medical devices. We may also inform military or veteran authorities if the client is a member of the armed forces. We may give information to coroners, medical examiners and funeral directors or for worker’s compensation, national security and anyone the law says we must give it to.
- We will give health information to organizations that handle organ, eye or tissue transplantation or to an organ donation bank. We will do that to make it easier for organ transplants and organ donation.
- We are allowed to use health information about the client in a way that does not personally identify the client.
- We may give health information about you to your family members or friends if you agree to it in writing.
If you make a request, we will tell you what information was disclosed. We will also tell you who got it and why.
Other uses and disclosures of health information
We will not use or tell anyone about a client’s health information for any reason other than the ones we have listed in the sections above unless we have the client’s written consent. We must obtain authorization separate from any Consent we have received from the client in the past. If we are given consent to use or disclose health information, the authorization may be revoked or stopped in writing, at any time. If the authorization is stopped, we will no longer use or give anyone else information about the client for the reasons covered by the written authorization. We cannot take back any uses or disclosures already made with the client or authorized caregiver permission.
If we have HIV or substance abuse information about the client, we cannot release that information without a special signed, written authorization (different from the authorization and consent mentioned above). In such instances, both a signed consent and a special written authorization is required by law. There are special laws for HIV or substance abuse records.
All consents/authorizations must be obtained from the client or authorized caregiver.
Rights regarding health information
Clients or their authorized caregivers have the following rights regarding health information:
- Right to look at and copy health information; Clients or their authorized caregivers have the right to look at their medical record and ask for a copy of the medical record, except for psychotherapy notes or other limited circumstances. However, a written request is required from the client at least one week in advance before they can be allowed to look at and/or receive a copy their health information. A fee may be charged for the costs of copying, mailing or other associated supplies.
- Right to change the Record; if a client and/or authorized caregiver believe the health information we have is not accurate, the client or authorized caregiver may ask us to change the information. If we cannot change the information, we will provide a written explanation.
- Right to an Accounting of Disclosures; Clients and/or authorized caregivers have the right to request an “accounting of disclosures.” This is a list of individuals/institutions to whom we have given medical information about the client for purposes other than treatment, payment and health care operations. To get this list, the client and/or authorized caregiver must submit a request in writing and state a time period for which records are requested, which may not be longer than three years.
- Right to Request Restrictions (Limits); clients and/or authorized caregivers have the right to request a restriction or limitation on the health information we use or give someone else about the client for treatment, payment or health care operations. The client and/or authorized caregiver also has the right to request a limit on the health information we give about the client to someone who is involved in the client’s care or the payment for it. Under the law, we do not have to agree to a requested restriction.
- Right to Confidential Communications; Sometimes, the client and/or authorized caregiver has the right to request that health information be talked about in a particular place or in a certain way. We will agree to all reasonable requests.
- Right to a Paper Copy of This Notice; The patient/ caregiver has the right to a paper copy of this notice and may ask for it at any time.
Changes to this notice
We can change this notice, and make the revised or changed notice effective for medical information we already have about the member. We can also change it in response to any information we receive in the future. We will post a summary of the current notice with its effective date in the top right hand corner. The client and/or authorized caregiver can always get a copy of the notice currently in effect.
For more information or to report a complaint
If you believe that your rights, with respect to the privacy of your health information, have been violated, you may file a complaint with our office or with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.
To file a complaint with the Secretary, write to:
Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20201
Or Call 1-877-696-6775
To file a privacy complaint with our office: Contact the MustardSeed Health Care Services, LLC., Privacy Officer at; (240) 439 4373 / Toll Free: 1- 844-239-6721 Ext 202 or ��send a mail to;
MustardSeed Health Care Services, LLC.
6 W. Washington Street, Ste. 212
Hagerstown, MD 21740