Health Information Disclosures & Uses
Examples Of Disclosures For Treatment, Payment And Health Operations
We will use your health information for treatment.
For example: Information obtained by a nurse, doctor or other member of your healthcare team will be recorded in your record and used to determine the course of treatment that should work best for you. Your doctor 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 doctor will know how you are responding to treatment.
We will also provide your doctor, or a subsequent healthcare provider, with copies of various reports that should assist him or her in treating you.
We will use your health information for payment.
For example: A bill may be sent to you or a third-party payer. The information on or accompanying the bill may include information that identifies you, as well as your diagnosis, procedures and supplies used.
We will use your health information for regular health operations.
For example: Members of the medical staff, the risk or quality improvement manager or members of the quality improvement team at SH 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.
Other Uses Or Disclosures That May Be Made Without Authorization
Business Associates: There are some services provided in our organization through contacts with business associates. Examples of business associates include certain healthcare quality improvement services, certain laboratory tests and a copy service we use when making copies of your health record. 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 you or your third-party payer for services rendered. To protect your health information, however, we require the business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.
Workforce Members: SH employees, volunteers, trainees and other persons who work at SH.
Hospital Directory: Unless you notify us that you object, we will use your name, location in the facility, general condition and religious affiliation for hospital directory purposes. This information may be provided to members of the clergy and, except for religious affiliation, to other people who ask for you by name.
Notification: Unless you object, we may use or disclose information to notify or assist in notifying a family member, personal representative or another person responsible for your care, your location and general condition.
Communication With Family: Unless you object, health professionals, using their best judgment, 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.
As Required By Law: We will disclose medical information about you when required to do so by federal, state or local law.
Military And Veterans: If you are a member of the armed forces, we may release medical information about you as required by military command authorities. We may also release information to components of the Department of Veterans Affairs to determine whether you are eligible for certain benefits.
Health Oversight Activities: We may disclose medical information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law. These oversight activities include, for example, audits, investigations, inspections and licensure. These activities are necessary for the government to monitor the healthcare system, government programs and compliance with civil rights laws.
Lawsuits And Disputes: We may disclose medical information about you in response to a court or administrative order. We may also disclose medical information about you in response to a subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process by someone else involved in a lawsuit or dispute, but only if efforts have been made to tell you about the request or to obtain an order protecting the information requested.
Law Enforcement: We may release medical information if asked to do so by a law enforcement official:
- In response to a court order, subpoena, warrant, summons or similar process.
- To identify or locate a suspect, fugitive, material witness or missing person. About the victim of a crime if, under certain limited circumstances, we are unable to obtain the person's agreement.
- About a death we believe may be the result of criminal conduct.
- About criminal conduct at the hospital.
In emergency circumstances to report a crime, the location of the crime or victims or the identity, description or location of the person who committed the crime.
National Security And Intelligence Activities: We may release medical information about you to authorized federal officials for intelligence, counterintelligence and other national security activities authorized by law.
To Avert A Serious Threat To Health Or Safety: We may use and disclose medical information about you when we determine it is necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of the public or another person. Any disclosure, however, would only be to a person or entity able to help prevent the threat.
Research: We may disclose information to researchers when their research proposal, reviewed by an institutional review board, has been approved. Protocols are established to ensure the privacy of your health information.
Funeral Directors: We may disclose health information to funeral directors consistent with applicable law to carry out their duties.
Organ Procurement Organizations: Consistent with applicable law, we may disclose health information to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement, banking or transplantation of organs for the purpose of tissue donation and transplant.
Marketing: We may contact you to provide appointment reminders or information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and SH services that may be of interest to you. We will not use your personal information, without your permission, to market services or products which are sponsored by or paid for by third party vendors.
Fundraising: We may use certain information (name, address, telephone number, dates of service, age and gender) to contact you in the future to raise money for Susquehanna Health. We may also provide this information to our institutionally related foundations only, for the same purpose. The money raised will be used to expand and improve the services and programs we provide for the communities we serve. If you do not wish to be contacted for fundraising efforts please notify the SH Foundations, 1001 Grampian Blvd., Williamsport PA 17701.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA): We may disclose to the FDA health information relative to adverse events with respect to food, supplements, product and product defects or post-marketing surveillance information to enable product recalls, repairs or replacement.
Workers' Compensation: We may disclose health information to the extent authorized by and to the extent necessary to comply with laws relating to workers' compensation or other similar programs established by law.
Public Health: As required by law, we may disclose your health information to public health or legal authorities charged with preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability.
Correctional Institution: Should you be an inmate of a correctional institution, we may disclose to the institution, or agents thereof, health information necessary for your health and the health and safety of other individuals.
Federal law makes provisions for your health information to be released to an appropriate health oversight agency, public health authority or attorney, provided that a workforce member or business associate believes in good faith that we have engaged in unlawful conduct or have otherwise violated professional or clinical standards and are potentially endangering one or more patients, workers or the public.