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Notice of Privacy Practices

THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY

Oneida County is required to protect the privacy of personal health information and to give you a notice that describes our legal duties and privacy practices. In general, when we release your health information, we must release only the information needed to achieve the purpose of the use or disclosure. This Notice describes the types of uses and disclosures that we may make and gives you some examples. We are required to follow the procedures in this Notice.

Oneida County reserves the rights to change this notice at any time. In the event of a change, Oneida County will provide a copy of the revised notice to you on request

How Oneida County May Use or Disclose Your Health Information:

The county uses your health information from your records without your written authorization to provide treatment to you, to arrange for payment, and for health care operations:

  1. TREATMENT: The County may share your health information with an internal health care provider. Any treatment would be noted in your records for other internal health care providers, caseworkers or therapists to see.
  2. PAYMENT: The County may submit your health information to Medical Assistance, the State of Wisconsin, or your health insurance company for reimbursement. When we do this, we will share the least amount of information so that payment can be made. Usually this involves identifying you, your diagnosis and the treatment provided.
  3. HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS: We may look at your file to review our operations. These quality and cost improvement activities may include evaluating the performance of your health care professionals or examining the effectiveness of the treatment provided to you when compared to similarly situated clients.
We may review your health information if it is time for us to re-establish your eligibility, to conduct reassessments for case review or for a routine visit.

The law allows Oneida County to share your protected health information without your authorization:

  1. As required by law: If any aspect of your medical information becomes the interest of a legal proceeding, court, or administrative action.
  2. For public health reasons: Certain information is gathered for statistical purposes and will be shared with the agency, i.e. center for disease control, state department of health, FDA, etc.
  3. Health oversight activities: The government monitors the activities of its benefit system, a review of which may include your personal health information.
  4. Death Records: Information about death is recorded and documented by various authorities, i.e. the register of deeds, coroner, medical examiner and funeral director.
  5. Organ Donation: In the case of Organ donation, information must be shared to get a match. Health and Safety Threat: Your information may be disclosed to prevent or lessen a serious threat to your heath or safety, to another person, or the general public.
  6. Health and Safety Threat: Your information may be disclosed to prevent or lessen a serious threat to your heath or safety, to another person, or the general public.
  7. Military, national security, incarceration, law enforcement custody: Your health information may be disclosed to the authority involved under the above circumstances.
  8. Worker’s Compensation: Health information may be disclosed according to the law if it involves worker’s compensation benefits.
  9. To those involved in your care or payment for your care: Family members and other legally responsible parties may be given information regarding your care and treatment.
  10. Victims of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence: Victims may have their health information disclosed to a governmental entity authorized to receive such reports.
  11. Statutory Exceptions: Wisconsin Statutes 51.30 and 252.
Except for the situation listed above, we must obtain you specific written authorization for any other release of your health information.

You do not have to sign the authorization to receive treatment or services.

If you sign an authorization, you may withdrawal your authorization at any time, as long as your withdrawal is in writing.

YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION RIGHTS:

ACCESS: You have the right to see your health records and request copies. Please contact the County Department that maintains the record to request such access. Copy charges may apply.

DISCLOSURES: The County must keep a record of who your information is disclosed to after April 14, 2003, except those disclosures noted in the above sections relating to treatment, billing, health care operation and certain other circumstances. You have a right to see the disclosure record. You may request this information from the County Department that maintains the record.

RESTRICTION: You have the right to request additional restrictions on how your health information is used or disclosed. The County does not have to agree to the request. However, if it does, the agreement must be in writing.

CONFIDENTIAL COMMUNICATIONS: You have the right to ask that we communicate your health information to you in different ways or places. For example, you may request that we contact you at a particular phone number, or different address. Your request must be in writing and we are required to accommodate reasonable requests in accordance with the law.

AMENDMENT: You do not have the right to change your health information. You have the right to request that we clarify your health information by adding information to your records. Your request must be in writing, and it must explain why the information should be amended. This applies only to health information created by the county. If we have information receive from other providers, the request must be made to the originator of the record. The County has the right to deny your request. The denial will be in writing. You may respond with a statement in writing as to why you would disagree with the decision, which will be added to the records. If we agree to amend the records as requested then we may also make reasonable efforts to inform others, including specific parties named by you of the changes.

COMPLAINT PROCESS: If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with us and/or with the federal Department of Health and Human Services. We will not retaliate against you for filing such a complaint. Oneida County has a complaint process regarding the use and/or disclosure of protected health information. If you wish to file a complaint, you may call, write, or present in person to the Privacy Officer at:

Oneida County
Department of Social Services
One Courthouse Sq.
PO Box 400
Rhinelander, WI 54501
715.362.5695 (voice)
715.362.3600 (TDD-TTY)

To file a complaint directly with the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services you may write to the Privacy Officer at:

Office of Civil Rights/DHHS
233 N. Michigan Ave - Suite 240
Chicago, IL 60601
or call 312.886.2359 (voice); 312.353.5693 (TDD)

If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact: --Social Services
715.362.5695
--Public Health
715.362.6111

Effective Date of This Notice: April 14, 2003
DRAFT, pending committee approval, 04/14/03


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